The California-based I Marine Expeditionary Force is getting a new commanding general, the Pentagon announced Wednesday.

President Biden nominated Lt. Gen. Michael Cederholm to be the new commander of I Marine Expeditionary Force, one of the three main Marine forces, according to a Defense Department news release. An aviator by training, Cederholm has served as deputy commandant for aviation since July 2022, according to his official bio.

He will replace Lt. Gen. George Smith, who assumed command of I Marine Expeditionary Force, in September 2021. The Marine Corps didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about what comes next for Smith, a career infantryman who received his commission in 1985.

Cederholm previously served as commander of 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing. He has flown every operational aircraft model in the Corps’ inventory, according to his bio.

Headquartered at Camp Pendleton, California, I Marine Expeditionary Force is composed of approximately 53,000 Marines and sailors across four main bases, according to the force’s website.

Maj. Gen. Bradford Gering will pin on a third star and replace Cederholm as the Corps’ aviation boss. He currently is in charge of 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, I MEF’s aviation unit.

Another two-star has been appointed to lieutenant general: Maj. Gen. Gregory Masiello. Now a military deputy to the undersecretary of defense for policy, Masiello has been assigned to be director of the Defense Contract Management Agency, according to the Department of Defense release.

Irene Loewenson is a staff reporter for Marine Corps Times. She joined Military Times as an editorial fellow in August 2022. She is a graduate of Williams College, where she was the editor-in-chief of the student newspaper.

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