There's a new leader at Fort Bragg

FORT BRAGG (WTVD) -- A new garrison commander has taken the reigns at Fort Bragg.

Colonel Brett T. Funck was installed Friday morning during a change-of-command ceremony at the Main Post Parade Field flag pole.

Funck, a veteran paratrooper with more than 20 years of service, replaces Col. Jeffrey Sanborn.

Sanborn has retired from the Army after 31 years of service. He became the Manager for Village of Pinehurst earlier this summer.

The Garrison Commander is essentially the equivalent of a civilian city manager, managing day-to-day municipal and personnel operations for troops and the civilian workforce.

With more than 53,000 troops, Fort Bragg is the nation's largest military installation by population.

Sanborn is credited with leading the Post through some of the toughest fiscal times the Army has faced.

A government shutdown, furloughs and sequestration all took place during his command, which began in 2012.

He and his wife Kimberly are also credited with creating the All-American Marathon and Mike-to-Mike Half Marathon. The event began two years ago, and is expected to be considered to become the Army's official marathon.

Sanborn credited his success to the surrounding civilian communities and Garrison staff, to include human resources, religious support services, youth services and public affairs.

"When it comes to community support, who has it better than us?" asked Sanborn. "And the answer is nobody."

Sanborn also got choked up when spoke about his parents, particularly his father who passed two years ago. He'd been a grocery store manager in Sanborn's youth.

"He taught me never to be afraid of hard work," Sanborn said.

Funck was commissioned in the Army after graduating from the U.S. Military Academy. He's deployed seven times. His missions include supporting Operation Joint Guardian in Albania and Kosovo, supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and deploying twice in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

He recognized the learning curve in his first month back at Fort Bragg, noting the "road ahead is uncertain," but promising to give 110 percent during his command.

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