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629th (Expeditionary) Military Intelligence Battalion Activation

20161023-Z-RJ815-0152

The commander of the Maryland Army National Guard hosted 629th (Expeditionary) Military Intelligence Battalion as they conducted their activation and assumption of command ceremony at Fort Meade on Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016.Brig. Gen. Timothy E. Gowen was the keynote speaker for the ceremony as Lt. Col. Colette R. Topfer took command of the newly formed battalion and uncased the guidons for her units.

“This is a great day for the Maryland Army National Guard,” said Gowen. “It is always better to be activating units and bring more capability to our state. This is a great area to have this type of unit with all the other similar government agencies in the area. Lt. Col. Topfer, I know with such outstanding Soldiers, NCOs and Officers that you’ll be successful.”

In April 2015, the 629th E-MIBn began to fill its ranks occupying the same Readiness Center in Laurel, Md., the previous 629th Military Intelligence Battalion that was inactivated on Aug. 31, 2006.

“I was one of a handful of Soldiers who reported to drill that first weekend in 2015,” said Topfer. “We looked at each other knowing that we had big job ahead of us creating a new unit. It is an honor to take command of this historic unit and I know it will do great things in the future.”

The new battalion consists of three companies, Headquarters, Alpha and Bravo. Headquarters Detachment provides mission command, lifecycle support, and logistics for the battalion. Alpha Company conducts counterintelligence and human intelligence in support of Corps, Division and Brigade Combat Teams. Bravo Company conducts multidiscipline intelligence operations through the use of signals intelligence, full motion video, linguist support, and all sources intelligence in support of echelons Corps and below unified land operations.