36th ENGINEER BRIGADE COMMANDER
COLONEL JAMES R. KOEPPEN
Colonel James Koeppen is a native of Chester, West Virginia. He was commissioned into the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers through the Marion Military Institute ROTC Program in Marion, Alabama. He joins the 36th Engineer Brigade after serving as the Chief of the III Corps Commander's Initiatives Group.
His began his Army career as a Platoon Leader and Company Executive Officer in the 23rd Engineer Company, Fort Richardson, Alaska. Following completion of the Engineer Officer's Advanced Course he joined the 70th Engineer Battalion, Fort Riley, Kansas where he served as an Assistant Operations Officer and later commanded Bravo Company. Colonel Koeppen went on to the National Training Center, Fort Irwin, California where he served as an Observer/Controller for the Scorpion and Sidewinder Teams.
Following completion of the Air Command and Staff College, COL Koeppen served as a staff officer in 3rd Army (CFLCC), Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. He then deployed twice to Iraq from Fort Riley, Kansas in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, first as the Brigade Engineer, 1st Sustainment Brigade and later Battalion Executive Officer, 168th Brigade Support Battalion, Baghdad, Iraq. He deployed again as the Battalion S3, 1st Engineer Battalion, Tikrit, Iraq.
Upon return from Iraq, COL Koeppen served as the Military Assistant to the Deputy Chief of Staff Operations, Allied Joint Force Command, Naples, Italy. Following his assignment to Italy he served as the Commander, 2d Engineer Battalion, White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico.
COL Koeppen earned a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice from Fairmont State University, Fairmont, West Virginia and a Master's Degree in Military Operational Art and Science from the U.S. Air Force Air Command and Staff College. In 2015 he attended the Columbia University Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies as a U.S. Army War College Fellow. He is also a graduate of the Engineer Officer Basic and Advanced courses, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.
COL Koeppen's military awards and decorations include: Bronze Star Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terror Expeditionary and Service Medals, NATO Medal for Libya, and the Air Assault Badge.
36th ENGINEER COMMAND SERGEANT
CSM DARREN OLIPHANT
CSM Oliphant is a native of La Farge, WI and entered the Army in November 1988. He attended Basic Combat Engineer Advanced Individual Training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.
CSM Oliphant has held a variety of leadership and staff positions. His prior assignments include 9th Engineer Battalion, 4th Engineer Battalion, 27th Engineer Battalion, 44th Engineer Battalion, XVIII Airborne Corps Non Commissioned Officer Academy, 35th Engineer Battalion, 425th BSTB, and 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) where he served on Division staff as the DIVENG and protection cell SGM. CSM Oliphant served as the Battalion Command Sergeant Major for the 31st Engineer Battalion at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri and 3-410th Brigade Engineer Battalion at Fort Bliss, Texas.
CSM Oliphant's military education includes: the Primary Leadership Development Course, Basic Noncommissioned Officers Course, Advanced Noncommissioned Officers Course, U.S. Army Sergeants Major Academy, Class 61, Drill Sergeant School, Air Assault Course, Pathfinder Course, Airborne School and Jumpmaster School, Ranger School, Sapper Leader Course and has earned a Bachelor and Masters of Science Degree in Business Management from Excelsior College.
CSM Oliphant's awards include Bronze Star Medal (with first Oak Leaf Cluster), Meritorious Service Medal (with fourth Oak Leaf Cluster), Army Commendation Medal (with fourth OLC), Army Achievement Medal (with fourth OLC), and numerous other awards.