173RD Airborne Brigade Commander


 COL Ken Burgess received his commission through ROTC as a Distinguished Military Graduate from James Madison University, Harrison, VA in 1997. He previously commanded the 2nd Ranger Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Joint Base Lewis McChord, Washington, and 1st Battalion, 325 Airborne Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division Ft. Bragg, NC. From Joint Staff as an Africa Counterterrorism Operations Officer and Executive Assistant to the Deputy Director for the Special Operations and Counterterrorism (DDSO/CT), J37. The Chairmen of Joint Chiefs of Staff awarded him the 2013 Joint Staff Action Officer of the Year. Throughout his career, COL Burgess served in multiple leadership and staff positions, including two Company Commands in the 2nd Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division, and a tour in the 3rd Infantry Division (Mechanized). He has numerous combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. COL Ken Burgess is a recent Distinguished Graduate from the U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, PA, with a Master of Strategic Studies and he holds a Master of Science Degree in Defense Analysis (Special Operations and Low Intensity conflict) from the Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA. COL Ken Burgess is married to the former Amy Schroeder of Maryland Line, Maryland and has two wonderful children, Grey (11), and Ella (8). He is the son of Captain (USN ret) Kenneth and Evelyn Burgess of Broad Run, Virginia.


  Col. Kenneth Burgess
     173RD Airborne Brigade, Brigade Commander





173RD Airborne Brigade Sergeant Major

CSM Christopher D. Clapin entered active duty service on 7 January, 1998. His first duty assignment was with Alpha Company, 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Benning, GA where he served in every duty position from Rifleman through Rife Platoon Sergeant.

CSM Clapin’s previous assignments include: Air Operations NCO, 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment; Rifle Platoon Sergeant, Alpha Company, 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment; Liaison NCO, HQ, 75th Ranger Regiment; Special Operations Forces Exchange Non-Commissioned Officer, United Kingdom; Operations NCO, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment; First Sergeant, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment; First Sergeant, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment; Operations Sergeant Major, 75th Ranger Regimental Special Troops Battalion; Command Sergeant Major, 75th Ranger Regimental Military Intelligence Battalion; and Command Sergeant Major, 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment.

CSM Clapin’s awards and decorations include the Expert Infantryman’s Badge, the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, the Ranger Tab, the Master Parachutist’s Badge with Combat Star, the Bronze Star Medal w/5 OLC, the Purple Heart, the Meritorious Service Medal w/4 OLC, the Joint Service Commendation Medal w/OLC, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Army Commendation Medal w/2 Silver OLC, the Army Good Conduct Medal (7th Award), the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal w/3 campaign stars, the Iraq Campaign Medal w/4 Campaign Stars, the Global War on Terror Expeditionary Medal w/Bronze Arrowhead, the Global War on Terror Service Medal, the NCO Professional Development Ribbon w/numeral 5, the Overseas Service Ribbon (6th Award), and the NATO Medal. Since October 2001, CSM Clapin has deployed 17 times in support of numerous combat operations across the CENTCOM AOR.

CSM Clapin is a graduate of the United States Special Operations Command Joint Special Operations Forces Senior Enlisted Academy (JSOFSEA), the U.S. Army Sergeant’s Major Course, and holds a Bachelor’s degree in History from Eastern Washington University. CSM Clapin is married to Mrs. Jane Clapin of Taunton, MA.

  CSM Christopher D. Clapin
     173RD Airborne Brigade, Brigade Command Sergeant Major

Home : About Us : Leadership


CSM Chad Bryan Harness

Command Sergeant Major Chad B. Harness is a native of Jacksonville, Florida. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in May 2001 and completed One Station Unit Training as an Infantryman from Fort Benning, GA.

CSM Harness has held numerous positions from Rifleman to Battalion Operations Sergeant Major. He has served as a Riflemen, Mortar Gunner, Rifle Squad Leader, Mortar Section Sergeant, Drill Sergeant, Rifle Platoon Sergeant, Ranger Instructor/Senior Instructor Writer, Basic Training First Sergeant, Rifle Company First Sergeant, Headquarters and Headquarters Company First Sergeant, and Battalion Operations Sergeant Major.

CSM Harness’s stateside assignments include Fort Benning, GA, Fort Riley, KS, Fort Campbell, KY, and Fort Bliss, TX. He has also completed an overseas tour to Vicenza, Italy. CSM Harness’s deployments include Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003-2004) and Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (2005-2006 & 2011-2012).

CSM Harness’s military education includes the completion of the Basic Leaders Course, Advanced Leaders Course, Senior Leaders Course, Sergeants Major Academy, Airborne School, Infantry Mortar Leader’s Course, Drill Sergeant School, Combatives level I – III, Short Range Marksmanship, Ranger School, Jump Master School, Pathfinder School, Air Assault School, and Master Resiliency Training. His civilian education includes an Associate of Applied Science degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Purdue and a Bachelor of Science degree in Liberal Arts from the University of Excelsior.

CSM Harness’s awards and decorations include: Bronze Star with OLC; Meritorious Service Medal with OLC, Army Commendation Medal w/ two Valorous devices and seven OLC, Army Achievement Medal w/ seven OLC, Senior Parachutist Badge w/ Combat Jump Star, Pathfinder Badge, Air Assault Badge, Combat Infantryman Badge, Expert Infantryman Badge, Drill Sergeant Badge, and the Ranger Tab. CSM Harness is also a recipient of the Order of Saint Maurice (Centurion award) and is a Distinguished Member of the 502nd Infantry Regiment.

CSM Harness currently reside in Vicenza Italy with his wife, Angelique and his two daughters Kyla (21) and Aiyana (14).