Col. Sonny B. Avichal

Norfolk District Commander

Norfolk District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Published July 14, 2024
Updated: July 12, 2024

Colonel Sonny B. Avichal serves as the 61st Commander of the Norfolk District. Prior to this assignment, he served as the Special Operations Command – Africa Engineer where he oversaw construction projects in support of Special Operations Forces in deployed to East and North West Africa. Colonel Avichal attended the National War College in Washington, DC where he obtained a Masters Degree in National Security Strategy.

He commanded the Nashville District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, from June 28, 2019, to July 1, 2021. As Commander and District Engineer, Colonel Avichal managed the water resources development and navigable waterways operations for the Cumberland and Tennessee River basins covering 59,000 square miles. Before assuming command of the Nashville District, Colonel Avichal served as the Deputy Commander of the New England District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Colonel Avichal received his commission as an Engineer Officer in 2002 and has served in leadership and staff positions in Iraq, South Korea, Germany,
and multiple locations in the United States.

His tours of duty with deployed units include the: 44th Engineer Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division (Korea and Iraq); 84th Engineer Battalion, 8th Theater Sustainment Command (Iraq); and with the US Army Corps of Engineers in support of the Mosul Dam Reconstruction (Iraq).

He has enjoyed several broadening and key developmental assignments throughout his career to include Assignment Officer for Engineer Branch, Human Resources Command; Olmsted Scholar, Lima, Peru; Operations Officer and Executive Officer for the 20th Engineer Brigade, Fort Liberty, NC; and Deputy Commander, New England District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Colonel Avichal holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the United States Military Academy, a Master of Arts Degree from Webster University and a Master’s Degree in National Security Strategy from the National War College. Additionally, he is a licensed Professional Engineer (P.E.) in the state of Virginia.

Colonel Avichal’s awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (with 4 Oak Leaf Clusters), the Army Commendation Medal (with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster), the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal (with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster), the Iraq Campaign Medal (with 3 campaign stars), the Korea Defense Service Medal, the Ranger Tab and the Parachutist Badge.