An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

NEWS | Jan. 5, 2024

CNMF receives new commander

Cyber National Mission Force

During a change of command ceremony at U.S. Cyber Command Headquarters on Friday, January 5, 2024, U.S. Army Maj. Gen. William J. Hartman relinquished command of the Cyber National Mission Force to U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Lorna Mahlock.

A change of command is a military tradition that represents a formal transfer of authority and responsibility for a unit from one commanding or flag officer to another. The passing of colors, standards, or ensigns for, an outgoing commander to an incoming one ensures that the unit and its service members are never without official leadership, a continuation of trust, and also signifies an allegiance of service members to their unit’s commander.

During Mahlock’s first address as the CNMF commander, she noted the important role the command has in defending the nation in and through cyberspace.

“It is an honor to be selected as the next commander of the Cyber National Mission Force,” said Mahlock. “I have had the opportunity to observe you from afar and I am humbled by the opportunity to serve alongside you. You are our nation’s elite cyber warriors, competing daily against a threat that is very real, but which few can comprehend, quantify or see.”

Since taking command in Aug. 2019, Hartman guided the command through several key milestones, including creating a new task force tailored to counter emerging threats and evolving CNMF to a subordinate unified command under U.S. Cyber Command in 2022.

“It has been an honor to lead the CNMF and the talented young Americans who work tirelessly to defend our nation,” said Hartman. “I am incredibly proud of all you have accomplished over these last few years, and I know you will continue to be the elite cyber force our nation needs.”

U.S. Army Gen. Paul M. Nakasone, commander of CYBERCOM, presided over the ceremony, including the symbolic passing of the guidon from the outgoing to the incoming commander.

“CNMF has always been the ‘go-to’ force when our Nation has a challenge in the cyber domain,” said Gen. Paul M. Nakasone, “these joint cyber operators are a powerhouse that punch above their weight against some of the world's most reckless and determined foreign malicious cyber actors.”

Nakasone added that in the last four and a half years, Maj. Gen. Hartman’s guidance was essential for CNMF’s growth and maturation. He noted that Maj. Gen. Mahlock’s experience serving within the National Security Agency focused on cybersecurity will further the integration, strengthen our relationships with critical partners, and ensure CNMF remains postured and ready to defend the Nation. 

As the commander, Mahlock is responsible for more than 2,000 joint service military and civilian personnel and contractors across 39 cyber teams organized in six task forces to conduct CNMF’s mission to plan, direct, and synchronize full-spectrum cyberspace operations to deter, disrupt, and if necessary, defeat adversary cyber and malign influence actors in order to Defend the Nation.

“You have proven you are up to the challenge of defending our nation in cyberspace,” Mahlock said. “I look forward to building upon the great work you have done.”

Mahlock’s previous assignments included several deployments supporting Operations Southern Watch and Iraqi Freedom. She has commanded at the numerous levels and also served as G3 Land Operation Lead and Division Executive Officer for Headquarters European Command, Marine Corps Office of Legislative Affairs, USMC Deputy Director for Operations, Plans Policy and Operations (PP&O), Chief Information Officer and C4 Headquarters U.S. Marine Corps. Her most recent assignment was Deputy Director for Combat Support at the Cybersecurity Directorate, National Security Agency. Mahlock enlisted in the Marine Corps. She was selected for the Marine Corps Enlisted Commissioning Education Program and was commissioned after graduating from Marquette University.

Hartman will assume the U.S. Cyber Command deputy commander role.