INDIAN HEAD, Md. — Cmdr. Eric Hui relieved Cmdr. Edgar Britt as commanding officer of Expeditionary Exploitation Unit 1 (EXU-1) during a change of command ceremony onboard Naval Support Facility Indian Head, May 26.
EXU-1 was first established in 2006 as a detachment under Naval Surface Warfare Center Indian Head Division (NSWC IHD). Due to its growth, increased responsibilities, proven capability and actionable contributions to combatant commanders and partner nations on battlefields across the globe, however, the Secretary of the Navy gave approval in 2017 to establish EXU-1 as an Echelon V command, culminating in a formal establishment as a stand-alone command in 2018.
Borrowing a term from President Theodore Roosevelt —fellowship of doers— Britt shared his admiration and respect for the unit.
“We have a diverse population [at EXU-1] and it doesn’t matter whether they are contractor, government civilian or an active duty person or reservist, these people are doers,” Britt said during his closing remarks. “It’s the kind of stuff that you see on national news or in articles, while they don’t mention EXU-1 by name, it’s those kinds of things that I can absolutely trace to the work that my people are doing. I couldn’t be prouder to have worked with the people here and be able to hand it off to the right person to take it to the next level.”
Hui brings extensive explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) experience to his new role as EXU-1’s commanding officer with previous assignments including weapons officer aboard USS Dextrous (MCM 13); combat systems officer at MCM Crew Dominant while embarked aboard USS Champion (MCM 4); EOD detachment officer in charge at EOD Mobile Unit 2; EOD platoon commander at EOD Mobile Unit 12; EOD staff officer to commander, Carrier Strike Group 9; operations officer at EOD Group 2; executive officer at EOD Mobile Unit 8; aide-de-camp to the commander and special assistant in the Commander’s Action Group at U.S. Southern Command; and underwater EOD fleet product director at Program Executive Office Unmanned and Small Combatants, Expeditionary Missions.
Hui thanked NSWC IHD Commanding Officer Capt. Eric Correll for the opportunity to lead EXU-1.
“Thank you for the trust that you invested in me to lead such an incredible team,” Hui said. “[Britt] is a special one-of-a-kind leader and it is an honor and a privilege to come behind him. To the EXU-1 team, I recognize I have enormous shoes to fill, but I am humbled and honored for the opportunity and challenge. I look forward to working together as we continue to build our unique and strategically important mission to keep our nation and our partner’s safe against threats to our security.”
EXU-1 leads NSWC IHD’s mission to collect, process, exploit and analyze improvised and conventional weapons, ordnance and components; and to provide near real-time technical intelligence to tactical commanders, the EOD community, service components, the Department of Defense, national-level intelligence agencies, and allied and partner nations.
EXU-1’s dedicated professionals are forward deployed in seven foreign countries and one U.S. territory, covering exploitation requirements in the U.S. 5th, 6th and 7th Fleets. Though modern capabilities have evolved since the early days of Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, the mission remains the same: “Defeat the Device, Attack the Network, and Train the Force.”
The event also served as Britt’s farewell as he retires from the Navy. Capt. Ken Kleinschnittger, USN Commodore, EOD Group 1 provided remarks as guest speaker and noted, “We learned from you, we are better because of you and we are thrilled for you and your family.”
NSWC IHD Commanding Officer Capt. Eric Correll presented Britt with a Meritorious Service Medal. Britt also received a Purple Heart Medal for wounds sustained in 2012 during action in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
NSWC IHD — a field activity of the Naval Sea Systems Command and part of the Navy’s Science and Engineering Establishment — is the leader in ordnance, energetics, and EOD solutions. The Division focuses on energetics research, development, testing, evaluation, in-service support, manufacturing and disposal; and provides warfighters solutions to detect, locate, access, identify, render safe, recover, exploit and dispose of explosive ordnance threats.