Col. Robert Novotny (left), 53rd Test and Evaluation Group commander, and Lt. Col. Steven Tittel (right), applaud after Lt. Col. Brian O’Neill assumes command of the 31st Test and Evaluation Squadron during a change of command ceremony in Bldg. 1810, May 10. Tittel, who is headed towards an assignment overseas, relinquished command to O’Neill who previously served as the director of operations for the squadron, which is a tenant unit at Edwards. The 53rd and 31st fall under Air Combat Command. While the 53rd TEG is based out of Nellis, Air Force Base, Nev., members of the 31st TES execute operational test and evaluation, and tactics development projects assigned by ACC here, which also supports current Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation Center efforts with the F-35A Lightning II. The unit performs functional management for acquisition, modification, testing and certification for fighter, bomber and combat support aircrew training systems.