This week on SOFREP Radio it is our esteemed honor to host Sergeant Major of the Army Michael A. Grinston.

For the uninitiated, the sergeant major of the Army is the most senior enlisted member in the United States Army and reports directly to the Army Chief of Staff.

As the sergeant major of the Army, Grinston is the Army chief of staff’s personal adviser on matters affecting the enlisted force. He devotes the majority of his time traveling throughout the Army to observe training and interact with Soldiers and their Families. He sits on a variety of councils and boards that make decisions affecting enlisted Soldiers and their Families and routinely invited to testify before Congress. SMA Grinston is the public face of the U.S. Army’s Noncommissioned Officer Corps, representing the NCO Corps to the American people in the media and through business and community engagements.

While SMA Grinston holds a lofty office, he is no stranger to life as an Army grunt; Grinston has held every enlisted leadership position in artillery, ranging from cannon crewmember to command sergeant major.

In this episode of SOFREP Radio, SMA Grinston pulls back the veil on the modern army, lending his decades of insight to everything from army-wide readiness to preparing the force for the future of war.

But make no mistake, this is no discussion of policy or theory. SMA Grinston answers questions about the deaths at Fort Hood, military suicide and mental health, and even the controversial basic training ‘Shark Attack’ technique.

Grinston is a native of Jasper, Alabama, and enlisted in the Army in October 1987. He attended Basic Training and Advanced Individual Training as an artilleryman at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Grinston’s deployments include Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield, Iraqi Freedom, New Dawn, Inherent Resolve, Enduring Freedom, and Kosovo. As the 1st Infantry Division command sergeant major, Grinston served as the senior enlisted leader for the Army’s first deployment of a division headquarters in support of Operation Inherent Resolve. He also served as the I Corps command sergeant major, and as the command sergeant major for U.S. Army Forces Command.

Grinston’s military education includes all levels of the Noncommissioned Officer Education System. He is a graduate of Ranger School, Airborne School, Drill Sergeant School, Air Assault School, How the Army Runs Course, the Equal Opportunity Leaders Course and the Keystone Course. Grinston holds a Bachelors of Arts in Business Administration from the University of Maryland University College.

His awards and decorations include the Army Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit (2nd award), Bronze Star Medal with Valor (2nd award), the Bronze Star medal (3rd award). He has earned the Ranger tab, Master Parachutist badge, Air Assault badge, Drill Sergeant Identification badge, and the Combat Action Badge.

Don’t miss this exclusive interview with the U.S. Army’s most senior enlisted member, SMA Michael Grinston.