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Corps plans big shift of general officers

Feb. 27, 2012 - 08:14AM   |   Last Updated: Feb. 27, 2012 - 08:14AM  |  
Clockwise from top left are Maj. Gen. Mark Clark, Maj. Gen. Raymond Fox, Lt. Gen. John Kelly, Brig. Gen. John Love, Maj. Gen. Lawrence Nicholson and Maj. Gen. Glenn Walters. They are among many top officers who will soon move to new commands.
Clockwise from top left are Maj. Gen. Mark Clark, Maj. Gen. Raymond Fox, Lt. Gen. John Kelly, Brig. Gen. John Love, Maj. Gen. Lawrence Nicholson and Maj. Gen. Glenn Walters. They are among many top officers who will soon move to new commands. (Staff)
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The Marine Corps will shift a variety of general officers in the next year as it realigns force structure and prepares to draw down the active-duty force by about 20,000 personnel.

The changes are outlined in a new 2012 general officer slate obtained by Marine Corps Times. It calls for new leadership at some of the service's most significant commands, including II Marine Expeditionary Force and Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command, both with headquarters at Camp Lejeune, N.C., and I MEF at Camp Pendleton, Calif.

The moves include:

East Coast. Maj. Gen. Raymond Fox will become the new head of II MEF, according to the slate. He currently serves as the commanding general of Training and Education Command in Quantico, Va. His shift to II MEF follows Commandant Gen. Jim Amos' plan to downgrade the force from a three-star command, even as it continues to serve as a parent command for most operational units on the East Coast.

Other expected moves involving East Coast commands include:

• Maj. Gen.-select Walter Miller Jr., commanding general of 2nd Marine Division (Forward).

• Brig. Gen. John Love, deputy commanding general of II MEF and commanding general of 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade.

• Brig. Gen. James Lukeman, commanding general of 2nd MARDIV.

• Maj. Gen. Glenn Walters, commanding general of 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing.

• Brig. Gen. Gary Thomas, assistant wing command, 2nd MAW.

• Brig. Gen.-select Edward Banta, commanding general 2nd Marine Logistics Group.

• Maj. Gen. Mark Clark, commanding general of Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command.

There will be movement, too, in the top two spots at Marine Corps Forces Command in Norfolk, Va., and in the deputy commander post at 2nd MARDIV, but those decisions are to be determined, according to the slate.

The next deputy commander of Marine Corps Forces Europe and Marine Corps Forces Africa will be Brig. Gen.-select James O'Meara. Both commands fall under MARFORCOM.

Pacific. Some of the most senior positions on the West Coast and in the Pacific will turn over, but the new commanders are to be determined, according to the slate. They include the top two spots at Marine Corps Forces Pacific, and the commander of Marine Corps Forces Central Command, which falls under MARFORPAC.

I MEF also will turn over, but the new commander has not been determined, the slate said.

Those who have been identified include:

• Brig. Gen.-select Gregg Olson, deputy commander of MARFORCENT.

• Maj. Gen. Frank McKenzie Jr., deputy commanding general of I MEF and commanding general of 1st MEB.

• Maj. Gen.-select Steven Busby, commanding general, 3rd MAW.

• Maj. Gen.-select Christopher Owens, commanding general 1st MAW.

• Brig. Gen. Niel Nelson, commanding general of 3rd MLG.

HQ and supporting establishment. A handful of changes also are expected at Marine Corps headquarters. They include the naming of new deputy commandants for aviation, and installations and logistics, according to the slate. The positions are still to be determined.

The following generals are expected to take over headquarters commands:

• Brig. Gen.-select Matthew Glavy, assistant deputy commandant for aviation.

• Brig. Gen.-select Eric Smith, director of the Capabilities Development Directorate.

• Maj. Gen.-select Michael Dana, assistant deputy commandant for installations and logistics, and director for logistics plans, policies and strategic mobility.

In the supporting establishment, general officers taking over new commands include:

• Maj. Gen. Thomas Murray, commanding general, TECOM.

• Brig. Gen. John Simmons, commanding general of Training Command.

• Brig. Gen.-select William Mullen III, president of Marine Corps University.

• Maj. Gen. Juan Ayala, commanding general of Camp Butler, Japan.

Other changes. The slate identifies three leadership changes for the Marine Corps Reserve, while acknowledging several other positions must be determined. The generals already identified for new commands include:

• Maj. Gen. Rex McMillian, director of reserve affairs at Manpower and Reserve Affairs.

• Brig. Gen. William Collins, commanding general of 4th MAW.

• Brig. Gen. James Hartsell, commanding general of 4th MARDIV.

Within joint commands, Lt. Gen. John Kelly has been identified as the next commander of U.S. Southern Command, according to the slate. President Obama recently announced he had been nominated for the position and promotion to four-star general.

Maj. Gen. Lawrence Nicholson has been selected to become chief of staff for joint operations for the International Security Assistance Force heading the war in Afghanistan.

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