Guam – A key officer in the Department of the Army visited Guam this week, meeting with Soldiers, and getting a pulse on current troop issues.
Lieutenant General Peter M. Vangjel, The Inspector General of the Army, arrived on island Wednesday and visited Army units including the Guam Army National Guard, the Army Reserve and the 3-196th Training Battalion.
While addressing close to 200 full-time members – Soldiers, Airmen and civilians, of the Guam National Guard, LTG Vangjel spoke about current issues, such as budget cuts, that are affecting the U.S. Army overall.
“At the end of the day, we’ve got to be very efficient about how we accomplish the mission. We’ve got to be very, very efficient about how many people we keep on the rolls. That’s going to cause leaders a little bit of angst. This is a period of transition… We’re going to have to work really hard as leaders to be clear with our Soldiers in particular, to make sure they understand why we’re doing what we’re doing,” he said.
The Inspector General (IG) at each major command is considered an extension of the commander’s eyes, ears, voice and conscience. The IG is a sounding board, as well as an expert fact finder for the commander. Part of the IG mission is to inquire and report on the discipline, efficiency, economy, morale, training and readiness throughout the unit.
LTG Vangjel conducted sensing sessions with different groups of officers during his visit. Meanwhile, his Senior Enlisted Adviser, Command Sergeant Major Rogelio Davidson, who was travelling with him, also met and spoke with different groups of enlisted Soldiers.
The Army IG also called on local civilian leaders such as Gov. Eddie Baza Calvo and David Sablan, Employer for Support of the Guard and Reserve chairman. He also visited other Army sites, met with commanders of the Army Reserve and the 3-196th TB, and spent time with IGs of other military services and federal agencies.
LTG Vangjel was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Field Artillery following graduation as a Distinguished Military Graduate from the University of New Hampshire ROTC in 1977. As a lieutenant he served in various assignments in Turkey, and Fort Bragg, GA.
As a captain he commanded field artillery batteries at Fort Bragg and in Germany, as well as a recruiting company in Ohio. During Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, LTG Vangjel served with 1st Battalion, 27th Field Artillery as the Battalion Executive Officer. He continued on to serve in higher lever positions at the Joint Staff level. He then took command of 5th Battalion, 3rd Field Artillery (MLRS) at Fort Sill from July 1994 to July 1996.
He attended the National War College in 1998, followed by a second tour at Fort Bragg where he served as the Senior Plans Officer in the 1st Battlefield Coordination Detachment, XVIII Airborne Corps, and later took command of the 18th Field Artillery Brigade (Airborne) in June 1999.
After brigade command, LTG Vangjel served as the Chief of Staff, 1st Infantry Division in Germany through July 2003. He then returned to the United States where he was assigned as the Deputy Commanding General, U.S. Army Recruiting Command, Fort Knox.
He took command of the XVIII Airborne Corps Artillery, then later deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom as the Effects Coordinator for Multi-National Corps-Iraq through February 2006. Following his tour in Iraq, LTG Vangjel served as the Director, Strategy, Plans, and Policy, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-3/5/7 in Washington, DC.
In September of 2007, LTG Vangjel assumed command of the Fires Center of Excellence, and served as the Commanding General at Fort Sill until August of 2009. He became the Deputy Commanding General of Third Army / United States Army Central, at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait in September 2009. LTG Vangjel served as Deputy Commanding General from 2009 until September of 2011. During that two year deployment, he served in Afghanistan, Iraq and Kuwait.
After returning to the United States, LTG Vangjel was nominated and confirmed to serve as The Army’s Inspector General. On 14 November 2011, LTG Vangjel became the 64th – The Inspector General of the United States Army.