HANAHAN -- The new commander of the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center in Charleston, known as SPAWAR, is both a South Carolina native and the operation's first black commander.

Captain-select Mark Glover will succeed Capt. Bruce Urbon as commanding officer of SPAWAR Systems Center Atlantic in a ceremony Thursday at Joint Base Charleston- Naval Weapons Station, beginning at 10 a.m. The change of command is part of the base's regular rotation, a spokesman said.

Urbon, who has been in charge since June 2008, reports to the Program Executive Office for Enterprise Information Systems in Washington, D.C.

Glover, 47, who hails from Walterboro, will become the eighth commanding officer of the center. He previously served in San Diego, where he worked in the Navy's satellite communications and Global Positioning System programs.

Glover enlisted in the Navy in 1982, launching an extensive career. In 1983 after completing Anti-Submarine Warfare training in San Diego, he served on the USS Antrim in Mayport, Fla., where he was a lead sonar technician for the ship's anti-submarine warfare systems.

His career included multiple assignments, trainings and postings. In 1985 he was selected to the Broadened Opportunity for Officer Selection and Training program and earned a Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps scholarship. Upon commissioning in 1990, he became a surface warfare officer and served aboard USS Halsey in San Diego.

In 2000, he was selected as a Navy Engineering Duty Officer. Upon completion of postgraduate school, he was assigned to Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific, San Diego.

From May to October 2008, he was assigned to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Baghdad during Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was a program manager for the reconstruction of Iraqi military bases, police stations, courthouses and prisons throughout Iraq.

SPAWAR is involved in a number of electronic military capabilities including communications, computer, intelligence-gathering surveillance and reconnaissance, information technology, and space capabilities.