The U.S. Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 11 held a change of command ceremony July 25 at Naval Outlying Landing Field Imperial Beach, California. During the ceremony, Cmdr. Ford Ewaldsen Jr. relieved Cmdr. Keith Dowling as Commanding Officer of EODMU-11.
Dowling assumed command of EODMU-11 in April 2012. During his time as commander, EODMU-11 deployed personnel specializing in combat expeditionary support, mine counter measures, naval special operations and mobile diving and salvage operations in support of U.S. Third, Fifth, and Seventh Fleet operations.
“EODMU-11’s motto is ‘Optimo Mandati’, when translated means commissioned to be the best, and you are the best,” said Dowling. “It is the men and women of EODMU-11 that deserve the recognition and I am proud to have served with you and having had the privilege to serve as your commanding officer.”
Additionally, Dowling led a 186-man expeditionary task group in the U.S. Naval Central Command (USNAVCENT) area of responsibility where he commanded 8 task units and 15 geographically dispersed task elements conducting EOD, diving, salvage, counter-IED, intelligence exploitation, combat camera, and maritime civil military operations in support of USNAVCENT operations.
Capt. Robert Baughman, commander, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group (EODGRU) 1, served as guest speaker for the ceremony.
“Keith’s leadership and commitment to all who work for him has clearly shown in the success of the EOD Mobile Unit Eleven team,” said Baughman. “You have prepared and trained your Sailors well, deployed them on a moment’s notice around the globe to conduct hazardous missions, and executed command and control of coalition forces. You have set the standard.”
Dowling is a graduate of the University of Florida and was commissioned an ensign in 1995. His next assignment is to the Naval War College, Newport RI.
Ewaldsen is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, and was commissioned an ensign in 1997.
Press Release, July 29, 2014