General Martin Dempsey was the United States' 18th chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He was sworn in on October 1, 2011.

Previously, Dempsey was the 37th chief of staff of the United States Army, a position he held from April 2011 to September 2011. Before that, he commanded the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command from 2008 to  2011. Dempsey was also deputy commander and then acting commander of U.S. Central Command from 2007 to 2008. In addition, he was commanding general of MNSTC-I in Iraq from 2005 to 2007 and commanded the 1st Armored Division in Baghdad from 2003 to 2005.

A career armor officer, Dempsey joined the U.S. Army in 1974 after graduating from the United States Military Academy. As a company grade officer, he served with the 2nd Cavalry in United States Army Europe and with the 10th Cavalry at Fort Carson. In 1991, Dempsey deployed with the Third Armored Division in support of Operation Desert Storm. Following Desert Storm, he commanded 4th Battalion 67th Armor (Bandits) in Germany for two years and then departed to become armor branch chief in U.S. Army Personnel Command. From 1996 to 1998, he served as the 67th Colonel of the Third Armored Cavalry Regiment. Following this assignment, Dempsey served on the Joint Staff as an assistant deputy director in J-5 and as special assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. From  2001 to  2003, Dempsey served in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia training and advising the Saudi Arabian National Guard.

Dempsey’s awards and decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Distinguished Service Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters, and the Defense Superior Service Medal.

Last Updated: August 2, 2017