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U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. Matthew J. Grabowski, center, the commander of troops during the 4th Marine Corps District Change of Command ceremony, receives orders from the new district commanding officer, Col. Heather J. Cotia, left, during the district change of command ceremony at the West Shore Country Club, Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, July 16, 2020. Col. Robert M. Clark relinquished his command to Cotoia after three years commanding the 4th Marine Corps District. (U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Cpl. Cody J. Ohira)

Photo by Cpl. Cody Ohira

4th Marine Corps District Change of Command

20 Jul 2020 | Sgt. Nelson Duenas 4th Marine Corps District

Col. Robert M. Clark relinquished command of the 4th Marine Corps District to Col. Heather J. Cotoia during the district change of command ceremony held at the West Shore Country Club, Camp Hill, Pa., July, 16, 2020.

 Clark led the recruiting efforts of 850 Marines, Sailors and civilians from July 2017 to July 2020.

“His professionalism technical competence and unwavering commitment to making mission and keeping moral high, not only for his Marines but also their families, left a lasting impression on his Marines,” as stated in his citation for his 2nd Legion of Merit award that he received during the ceremony.

 During his speech, Clark spoke of his genuine love of the Marine Corps and how he encourages the Marines, spread across 11 states, to meet the recruiting mission each month.

“I tell [the recruiters] all the time, when they come to recruiting duty, to convince these young patriots to join, but never ever sell the Marine Corps. Don’t look at yourself as your selling the Marine Corps. What your doing is spreading the good word of the Marine Corps on how it made your life better,” said Clark.

 Cotoia, who brings a wealth of experience from the various billets and locations that she has served at in the past, said she knows that she has a big legacy to carry on at the 4th Marine Corps District, but that she is ready to tackle the challenge.

“It is an honor and a privilege to be selected for this position. I know that serving beside you will be an absolute privilege,” said Cotoia to the Marines in attendance at the ceremony. “Rest assured that the mission is well in hand. I will take care of our Marines and maintain the 4th Marine Corps District legacy.”

Clark is scheduled to report to the US Second Fleet Staff.


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