President Barack Obama stands in the Rose Garden of the White House with (left to right) National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, U.S. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey, Adm. James

Official White House photo by Chuck Kennedy

Nominated generals have long history in U.S. Army Europe

By U.S. Army Europe Public Affairs
June 2, 2011

HEIDELBERG, Germany -- President Barack Obama has nominated two officers with extensive service in U.S. Army Europe to be the senior uniformed leaders in the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Army.

Gen. Martin Dempsey has been nominated to serve as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Gen. Ray Odierno has been nominated to replace Dempsey as the Chief of Staff of the Army.

The generals simultaneously served here twice, in 1976 and then in 1990-91 when both were in the 3rd Armored Division and deployed to Operation Desert Storm.

Dempsey started his career in the Army with the 1st Squadron, 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment as a scout and support platoon leader, and squadron adjutant in the Bavarian town of Bindlach, Germany, in 1975.

He later served as the executive officer of the 4th Battalion, 67th Armor, 3rd Armored Division in Friedberg, Germany, from 1988 to 1989. He then served with 3rd Brigade, 3rd Armored Division from 1989 to 1991, first as the operations officer, then as the executive officer.

Dempsey’s subsequent assignment was commander of the 4th Battalion, 67th Armor in Friedberg from 1991 to 1993, when the unit was newly assigned under the 1st Armored Division.

Dempsey most recently served in USAREUR as the commanding general of the Wiesbaden, Germany-based 1st Armored Division from 2003 to 2005, leading the unit’s 14-month Iraq deployment.

Dempsey also served as the Assistant Deputy Director for Politico-Military Affairs, Europe and Africa, J-5, The Joint Staff in Washington, D.C., from 1998 to 1999.

Dempsey was nominated to head U.S. Army Europe in February 2008, however, he was instead appointed as acting commander of U.S. Central Command in March of that year.

Odierno’s first Army assignment was to the 1st Battalion, 41st Field Artillery, 56th Field Artillery Brigade in 1976 as a platoon leader and survey officer in Schwabisch Gmuend, Germany, approximately 30 miles from Stuttgart. In 1978 Odierno was assigned as aide-de-camp to the brigade’s commanding general.

He returned to Germany in 1990 as the executive officer of the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Field Artillery, 3rd Armored Division in Kirch Goens, Germany, deploying to the Persian Gulf in support of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

He subsequently served as the executive officer of V Corps’ 42nd Field Artillery Brigade in Giessen, Germany.

From 1997 to 1999 he served as V Corps chief of staff, and the assistant division commander (support) for 1st Armored Division, including duty as deputy commanding general for ground operations for Task Force Hawk during Operation Allied Force in Albania.

Both generals’ nominations are pending Senate confirmation.