A highly decorated Jasper native will be the next sergeant major of the Army, the Pentagon announced Tuesday.
Command Sgt. Major Michael Grinston, currently serving as the senior enlisted leader of U.S. Army Forces Command, will be sworn in as the 16th command sergeant major of the Army on Aug. 16.
“I am honored to have the opportunity to continue to serve the great soldiers and families of the United States Army,” Grinston said.
The artilleryman has deployed as part of every major U.S. campaign since he enlisted in 1987, including two tours each to Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, as well as Desert Shield, Desert Storm and to Kosovo. Grinston was the senior enlisted leader for the Army’s first deployment of a division headquarters, with 1st Infantry Division, in support of Operation Inherent Resolve from October 2014 to June 2015.
His awards and decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, two Legion of Merit medals, and five Bronze Stars (two with ‘V’ devices for valor). He has earned the Ranger tab, Master Parachutist badge, Air Assault badge, Drill Sergeant Identification badge and the Combat Action badge. He has attended every level of the Noncommissioned Officer Education System, and is a graduate of Ranger, Airborne and Air Assault schools. He’s also a graduate of the U.S. Army Drill Sergeant School and the Equal Opportunity Course.
“I look forward to working with Command Sgt. Maj. Michael Grinston,” Secretary of the Army Mark Esper said. “The Army is in the midst of a renaissance, and he is a great choice to carry on our readiness, modernization and reform efforts.”
Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley joined Esper in announcing Grinston’s promotion.
“Congratulations to Command Sgt. Maj. Grinston and his family,” Milley said. “He is a world-class leader who stands out among our exceptional Noncommissioned Officer Corps. He is the right noncommissioned officer to lead our Army into the future.”
Grinston will succeed Sgt. Maj. of the Army Daniel Dailey, who has served in that position since January 2015.
“Command Sgt. Maj. Grinston is the right leader,” Dailey said. “He possesses all of the character and leadership qualities necessary to lead our NCO Corps into the future, and he will continue to serve the best interests of our soldiers, their families and the Army.”
The sergeant major of the Army (SMA) serves as the Army chief of staff’s personal adviser on matters affecting the enlisted force. Much of the sergeant major of the Army’s time is spent traveling throughout the Army to observe training, and talk to soldiers and their families.
The SMA recommends quality-of-life improvements to Army leadership and sits on numerous councils that make decisions affecting Army families. The sergeant major of the Army routinely testifies before Congress on these issues. Additionally, Grinston will serve as the public face of the Army’s NCO Corps to the American people, in the media and through business and community engagements.
Grinston has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration from the University of Maryland University College. He is married and has two daughters.