COL Brendan R. Gallagher
COL Brendan Gallagher was commissioned as an Infantry officer via ROTC at Johns Hopkins University in 2001.
He attended the Infantry Officer Basic Course and Ranger School in 2001. His first assignment was as a rifle platoon leader and then company XO in B Co, 1-506th Infantry Regiment, Camp Greaves, Korea.
In 2003, he was assigned to C Co, 3rd Ranger Battalion where he served as platoon leader and deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2005, he attended the Infantry Captains Career Course where he was recognized as the distinguished honor graduate.
COL Gallagher was next assigned to 1-5 CAV, 2ABCT, 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Cavazos (known as Fort Hood prior to 2023), Texas, in 2006 where he served as Battalion Assistant S3, and then assumed command of B Co for the majority of a 15-month deployment to Baghdad during the Iraq surge. He was then assigned to the 75th Ranger Regiment in 2009 where he served as LNO and Regimental Assistant S-3, prior to assuming command of Regimental HHC and deploying multiple times to Afghanistan.
From 2011-2012, he attended the Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where he received the General George C. Marshall Award as the distinguished graduate. He was next assigned to 6-4 CAV, 3IBCT, 1st Infantry Division, where he served as Squadron S3, and then served as Brigade XO in Afghanistan. Following redeployment, he was selected for the Advanced Strategic Planning and Policy Program to conduct doctoral studies at Princeton.
In 2017, he was assigned to the Commander’s Action Group at the Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Moore (known as Fort Benning prior to 2023), Georgia, and later served as XO to the Commanding General. He subsequently commanded 1st Battalion, 50th Infantry Regiment. Following that, he commanded 1st Battalion, 3rd Security Force Assistance Brigade at Fort Cavazos, Texas. Next, he served as Chief of the Collective Training Division on the Army Staff, G-3/5/7 at the Pentagon.
Colonel Gallagher’s awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal (2 Oak Leaf Clusters), Meritorious Service Medal (4 OLC), Combat Infantryman Badge, Expert Infantryman Badge, Master Parachutist Badge, Pathfinder Badge, Air Assault Badge, German Armed Forces Proficiency Badge (Gold), and the Ranger Tab.
He holds a B.A. and M.A. in International Relations from Johns Hopkins University, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Public Affairs from Princeton University.
Ms. Aurora I. Castaneda
Deputy Garrison Commander
Aurora Castañeda assumed the position of Deputy Garrison Commander, U.S. Army Garrison Fort Bliss, Texas, in July 2022. However, she is no stranger to Fort Bliss and the surrounding El Paso community. Upon graduating from the University of Texas at El Paso, she began her civil service career at Fort Bliss, serving for 17 years before applying and selection to attend the Defense Comptroller Program where she earned two master’s degrees from Syracuse University. Her follow-on assignment was to G8, Installation Management Command Headquarters, Crystal City, Virginia.
Ms. Castañeda embraces the ongoing learning from many leaders and team-mates, as well as her varied experiences at both the Garrison and HQ echelons. She has been a Resource Manager throughout her career, starting as a HQ Department of the Army Intern assigned to Fort Bliss and culminating as the IMCOM Deputy G8, where she managed resources that spanned across all IMCOM echelons, missions, and core competencies. She brings that experience to her new role as the Deputy Garrison Commander empowering staff to deliver base services that enable mission readiness and enhance the quality of life for our Soldiers, Families, and Civilians.
Her awards and decorations are commensurate with her time and service, to include recently receiving the Superior Civilian Service Medal for contributions made as the Deputy G8, IMCOM HQ.
CSM David N. Sweeney
Command Sergeant Major
CSM David Sweeney enlisted into the U.S. Army in January 2001 and attended Basic Training and AIT at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, to be a Military Police Soldier. His assignments include United Nations Command Security Battalion-Joint Security Area Korea; 258th Military Police Company, Fort Johnson, Louisiana; 142nd Military Police Company, Yongsan, Korea; 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 10th Mountain Division (LI), HHD, 91st Military Police Battalion, and 563rd Military Police Company, Fort Drum, New York; NCOIC, Joint Staff Military Security Force, Washington, D.C.; First Sergeant, 557th Military Police Company, Camp Humphreys, Korea; and 289th Military Police Company, The Old Guard; Physical Security NCO, Joint Staff Security Office, Washington D.C; Directorate of Emergency Services SGM, National Training Center, Fort Irwin, California; Operations Sergeant Major, 508th Military Police Battalion (Detention), Joint Base Lewis McCord, Washington; Battalion CSM, 720th Military Police Battalion, Fort Cavazos (known as Fort Hood prior to 2023), Texas; and Request for Forces Task Force CSM, Operation Allies Welcome, Fort McCoy, Wisconsin.
CSM Sweeney has deployed on numerous occasions in support of Operation Noble Eagle, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Allies Refuge/Welcome.
His military education and training includes: Systems Thinking-Army Prevention Expert, Pre-Command Course-BN/BDE/IMCOM, Non-Resident Sergeants Major Course 44 (Class 68), How The Army Runs Course, Force Management Orientation Course, Law Enforcement Senior Leaders Course, Directorate of Emergency Services Course, Battle Staff NCO Course, Tactical Information Operations Course, Battlefield Forensics Course, Combat Tracker Working Dog Course, 31E Conversion Course, all NCOPDS courses, and other military police and additional duty courses.
He holds a bachelor’s in General Studies from Excelsior College and a Green Belt in Lean Six Sigma.
His awards and decorations are commensurate with his time in service, rank, and positions.