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Colonel McCollum Awarded Legion of Merit

Colonel John M. McCollum is presented with the Legion of Merit award at the June 2, 2015 City of Ridgeland Mayor and Board of Aldermen meeting by Mayor Gene McGee. Colonel McCollum who serves as the City of Ridgeland Public Works Director was recognized with the award upon retirement from a 31-year career with the United States Army. At the culmination of his military career, McCollum was holding the position of Executive Officer of the 4010 United States Army Hospital with the Army Reserve Medical Command. His outstanding leadership, technical competence and distinctive accomplishments contributed immeasurably to the Army. He is recognized for distinguished performance of duty that represents exemplary service in the finest tradition of the United States Army.

Colonel John M. McCollum is presented with the Legion of Merit award at the June 2, 2015 City of Ridgeland Mayor and Board of Aldermen meeting by Mayor Gene McGee. Colonel McCollum who serves as the City of Ridgeland Public Works Director was recognized with the award upon retirement from a 31-year career with the United States Army. At the culmination of his military career, McCollum was holding the position of Executive Officer of the 4010 United States Army Hospital with the Army Reserve Medical Command. His outstanding leadership, technical competence and distinctive accomplishments contributed immeasurably to the Army. He is recognized for distinguished performance of duty that represents exemplary service in the finest tradition of the United States Army.

Mike McCollum, Director of Public Works for the City of Ridgeland, was honored at a recent Mayor and Board of Aldermen meeting with a presentation of the Legion of Merit medal. Known as Colonel John M. McCollum to the United States Army, McCollum accepted this medal upon retirement after a 31-year career. The Legion of Merit medal, instituted in 1942, is earned for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding service to the United States. The City of Ridgeland chose to officially recognize his service to our country in the ceremonial presentation on June 2.

Colonel McCollum culminated his years of service with the Army Reserve Medical Command as the Executive Officer of the 4010 United States Army Hospital. His distinguished career began June 1981 and included holding positions of increasing responsibility at various locations throughout the world until May 2013.

As stated on The Legion of Merit presented to McCollum, “His outstanding leadership, technical competence and distinctive accomplishments contributed immeasurably to the Army. Upon retirement, Colonel McCollum is recognized for distinguished performance of duty that represents exemplary service in finest tradition of the United States Army.”

Mayor Gene McGee said, “The City of Ridgeland is privileged to have such an outstanding military officer as Colonel McCollum on our staff. He performs an exemplary job as a Department Head for the City of Ridgeland, and many of his capabilities can be attributed to his military training. He exhibits model leadership and is well respected and appreciated by city officials.”

Besides serving as Commander and Executive Officer for the 4010 United States Army Hospital, other significant leadership roles include Commander for the 324 Personnel Replacement Battalion and Theater Personnel Directorate Operations Chief.

Colonel McCollum planned for the deployment of personnel units in the Theater of Operations in preparation for the invasion of Iraq in 2002. He planned the location of mail facilities and personnel replacement centers. As a result of his preparation efforts, over 250,000 military and civilian personnel were accounted for, received mail services and were tracked for personnel replacement as required.

Colonel McCollum was a key individual who successfully led a Task Force of 317 personnel from the Army, Navy, Air Force, DA civilian and Arkansas National Guard from all over the United States to conduct the unprecedented Innovative  Readiness Training Mission in 2011. As a result of his leadership, over 5595 residents and 257 animals received desperately needed medical care.

As the Battalion Commander of the 324 Personnel Replacement Battalion, Colonel McCollum led the 324 to conduct multiple training exercises culminating in the Personnel Accountability and Strength Reporting mission for Operation Bright Star in Egypt. He established the in-country processing stations for all United States personnel entering and leaving the country and fostered a cordial relationship with the Egyptian Commanding General and his staff that facilitated communications between the two forces. As a result of his efforts, over 30,000 United States military and civilian personnel were accounted for and processed in and out of the country without incident.

The City of Ridgeland extends congratulations to McCollum on his outstanding military career and retirement from the U.S. Army.