AUSA’s Thought Leaders livestream series—an extension of our Thought Leaders podcast—will temporarily take the place of the General Bernard W. Rogers Strategic Issues Forum and General Lyman L. Lemnitzer Lecture Series.
With a tight focus on senior military leaders and contemporary military authors, Thought Leaders seeks to educate the public on critical issues affecting land forces and strategy. Please join us on Tuesday, 5 January 2021 at 1000 to hear a presentation by Kenneth O. Preston, Michael P. Barrett, Rick D. West, James A. Roy, Denise M. Jelinek-Hall and Charles W. "Skip" Bowen authors of Breaching the Summit: Leadership From The US Military’s Best.

Tue, Jan 5, 2021 · 9:55 AM Eastern Time (US & Canada) (GMT -5:00)
SMA Kenneth O. Preston
U.S. Army Retired
Sergeant Major of the Army Kenneth O. Preston served as the 13th Sergeant Major of the Army from January15, 2004 to March 1, 2011. He retires as the longest serving Sergeant Major of the Army with more than seven years in the position.
As Sergeant Major of the Army, Preston served as the Army Chief of Staff's personal adviser on all Soldier and Family related matters, particularly areas affecting Soldier training and quality of life. He devoted the majority of his time in this position to traveling throughout the Army serving as a force provider overseeing Soldier and unit training, manning and equipping challenges, and talking to Soldiers and their Families to understand their personal hardships and challenges.
Preston is a native of Mount Savage, Md. He entered the Army on June 30, 1975. He attended Basic Training and Armor Advanced Individual Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky.
Throughout his 36-year career, he served in every enlisted leadership position from cavalry scout and tank commander to his final position as Sergeant Major of the Army. Other assignments he held as a command sergeant major were with the 3rd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division; 3rd "Grey Wolf" Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division; 1st Armored Division in Bad Kreuznach, Germany; and V Corps in Heidelberg, Germany.
His most recent assignment prior to serving as the 13th Sergeant Major of the Army was as the command sergeant major for Combined Joint Task Force 7 in Baghdad, Iraq.
His military education includes the Basic Noncommissioned Officer's Course, Advanced Noncommissioned Officer's Course, First Sergeant's Course, M1/M1A1 Tank Master Gunner Course, Master Fitness Trainer Course, Battle Staff Noncommissioned Officer's Course, and the United States Army Sergeants Major Academy. Preston holds a Graduate Degree in Business Administration from Trident University International.
His awards and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Bronze Star Medal, Army Meritorious Service Medal with 3 oak leaf clusters, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal with 3 oak leaf clusters, Army Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Good Conduct Medal 11th award, National Defense ribbon with bronze star, Southwest Asia Service Medal, Kosovo Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Noncommissioned Officer Education System Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon 5th award, NATO Medal, Kuwait Liberation Medal (Government of Kuwait), Joint Meritorious Unit Award with bronze star, Army Meritorious Unit Commendation and the Department of the Army Staff Badge.
He and his wife Karen have 3 adult children Valarie, Kenneth Jr., Michael, and 8 grandchildren.

LTG Guy Swan III, U.S. Army Retired
AUSA Vice President, Education
SMA Daniel Dailey
Vice President, NCO & Soldier Programs
Sgt. Maj. of the Army Daniel A. Dailey, U.S. Army retired, joined the staff of the Association of the U.S. Army, where he serves as vice president of Noncommissioned Officer and Soldier Programs.

A native of Palmerton, Pennsylvania, Dailey enlisted in the Army in 1989 and attended basic training and advanced individual training as an 11B (infantryman) at Fort Benning, Georgia. During his career, Dailey held every enlisted leadership position in the mechanized infantry, ranging from Bradley Fighting Vehicle commander to command sergeant major. Dailey has served with the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Infantry Divisions stateside and overseas. In March 2009, he was selected as the 4th Infantry Division command sergeant major, where he served as both the command sergeant major of Fort Carson, Colorado, and U.S. Division‐North, Iraq. In 2011, Dailey was selected to serve as the command sergeant major of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC). Dailey was sworn in as the 15th sergeant major of the Army on Jan. 30, 2015, and relinquished the position on Aug. 9, 2019.

In addition to four tours in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn, Dailey deployed in support of Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. He earned the Bronze Star with Valor for his leadership during the 4th Infantry Division’s two‐month Battle for Sadr City in 2008.

Dailey is a graduate of class 54 of the U.S. Army Sergeants Major Academy and the Command Sergeants Major Course. Dailey holds a Bachelor of Science (Summa Cum Laude) from Excelsior College.

Dailey has been married to his wife, Holly, for 26 years. They have one son, Dakota.
Rick West
MCPON West was born in Rising Fawn, Ga. He graduated from Northwest Georgia High School in 1981 and immediately entered the U.S. Navy.
West received recruit training and Quartermaster training at Orlando, Fla., followed by Enlisted Submarine School at Groton, Conn. His first duty assignment was aboard USS Ethan Allen (SSN 608) where he completed submarine qualifications. Other assignments include USS Thomas Edison (SSBN 610), USS Sea Devil (SSN 664), Commander Naval Activities United Kingdom (COMNAVACTUK), USS Tecumseh (SSBN 628)(Blue), and Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet (COMSUBPAC) Staff (TRE Team).
West was then assigned as Chief of the Boat aboard the San Diego-based fast-attack submarine, USS Portsmouth (SSN 707), where he completed two Western Pacific deployments and the crew earned two, Battle Efficiency “E” awards.
Upon completion of a Command Master Chief (CMC) tour at Submarine Squadron (COMSUBRON) ELEVEN, he was selected as COMSUBPAC Force Master Chief from January 2001 to 2004. During this time, West also attended the Senior Enlisted Academy in Newport, R.I. West then reported as the CMC to USS Preble (DDG 88) homeported in San Diego, where he deployed to the Persian Gulf and qualified as an Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist.
West was selected during his tour on the Preble to serve as the Pacific Fleet (PACFLT), Fleet Master Chief from February 2005 to June 2007. Following PACFLT, he served as the 14th Fleet Master Chief for Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command from June 2007 to December 2008. The first Master Chief to hold both Fleet Master Chief positions.
West's personal awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit (two awards), Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (two awards), Enlisted Surface Warfare Insignia, Enlisted Submarine Insignia, and SSBN Deterrent Patrol Pin.
West became the 12th Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy on Dec. 12, 2008. On September 28, 2012, he stepped down as MCPON and retired from the Navy after over a three-decade career.
Rick West currently works at Progeny Systems Corporation, Veterans United Home Loans and sits as a Military Advisor on the board with First Command Financial. Rick and his wife Bobbi currently reside in Poulsbo, WA.
Denise M. Jelinski-Hall
Chief Master Sergeant
Chief Master Sergeant Denise M. Jelinski-Hall finished her distinguished career serving as the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chief of the National Guard Bureau. In this position her responsibilities included advising the Chief of the National Guard Bureau on all enlisted matters affecting training and utilization, health of the force, and enlisted professional development of approximately 415,000 National Guard Soldiers and Airmen. Additionally, she was heavily involved in all matters that affected the families of National Guard Soldiers and Airmen. While assigned to the Pentagon, she served on numerous executive level committees representing the National Guard Enlisted Corps.

Chief Jelinski-Hall was born in Little Falls, Minnesota. She enlisted in the Air Force and reported to Lackland Air Force Base, Texas for Air Force Basic Military Training on November 14, 1984. She completed Air Traffic Control
Training at Keesler Air Force Base, Biloxi, Mississippi. She was assigned to Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska in July 1985. In April 1987, she Palace Chased into the California Air National Guard and served as a
Ground Radio Operator. She and her family moved to Hawaii in 1990 where she joined the 297th Air Traffic
Control Flight, Barbers Point, Hawaii. In 2002, she transferred to the HQ 201st Combat Communications Group, Hickam AFB, Hawaii where she served as a Combat Airspace Manager. In 2004, she was selected to serve as the Command Chief for the 154th Wing, Hawaii Air National Guard. In 2006, she was selected as the Command Chief Master Sergeant for the Hawaii Air National Guard. Shortly thereafter the Adjutant General of Hawaii selected her to serve as the State Senior Enlisted Leader for the Hawaii National Guard (Army and Air). She held both positions simultaneously until she assumed the position of the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chief of the National Guard Bureau in February 2010.

Chief Jelinski-Hall has the distinction of having achieved the highest position ever held by an enlisted woman in the history of the United States Armed Forces.
James Roy
Chief Master Sergeant, USAF Reited
Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force (CMSAF) James A. Roy is a United States veteran who served in the United States Air Force for 31 years. He served as the personal advisor to the Chief of Staff and the Secretary of the Air Force on all issues regarding the welfare, readiness, morale, and proper utilization and progress of the enlisted force. CMSAF Roy is the 16th chief master sergeant appointed to the highest noncommissioned officer position. He held this position from 2009 to 2013.
Chief Roy entered the Air Force in 1982. His background includes numerous leadership roles at squadron, group, numbered air force and combatant command levels. He served as a superintendent of a military personnel flight and a mission support group before becoming a command chief master sergeant at the wing, air expeditionary wing, numbered air force and combatant command levels. Before assuming his final position, Chief Roy served as the Senior Enlisted Leader and adviser to the U.S. Pacific Command Combatant Commander and staff.
Post-retirement, Chief Roy has held a series of progressively more senior positions at the Scientific Research Corporation, including Senior Program Manager of Air Force Programs, Director of Air Force Programs, Senior Director of Operation Testing, and Senior Director of Product, Sustainment and Instrumentation. Chief Roy is the Vice President, Operations and Business Development at Silotech Group.
Chief Roy holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Management from Park College in Parkville, Missouri, where he graduated with honors. In addition, he earned a Master’s of Science in Human Resource Management from Troy State College in Troy, Alabama. He has completed senior leadership courses at the Department of Defense and the Defense Institute of Security Assistance Management, Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio.
Charles Bowen
Master Chief Petty Officer, Coast Guard
Charles W. “Skip” Bowen served as the 10th Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard from 2006 to 2010. Highlights of his 32 year Coast Guard career Master Chief Bowen include tours as the Officer in Charge of USCGC POINT TURNER, USCGC HAMMERHEAD, Coast Guard Station New Haven, Coast Guard Station Sand Key, and Coast Guard Station Marathon FL. He also served as the District Seven CMC from 1999-2001 and Coast Guard Headquarters and Headquarters Units from 2002 -2004.
Personal awards include the Coast Guard Distinguished Service Medal, Four Meritorious Service Medals with “O” device, Four Coast Guard Commendation Medals with “O” device, and three Coast Guard Achievement Medals with “O” device.
Master Chief Bowen holds a Bachelor of Science degree, magna cum laude, from Excelsior College and a Master’s degree in business administration, summa cum laude, from Touro University International.
Master Chief Bowen’s first position post-retirement was as a senior program manager with CACI, a company in Fairfax Virginia focused on national security missions. In April 2011, he accepted a position with Bollinger Shipyards as the program manager of the Fast Response Cutter program. The following year he was promoted to Vice President of Government Relations for the shipyard.
In addition to Bollinger Shipyards Master Chief Bowen has served on the board or advisory council of many organizations affiliated with the military. These include the Surface Navy Association, Armed Forces Retirement Home, First Command Financial Services, Broward Navy Days, Mission Readiness, Veteran’s United Home Loans, the Coast Guard’s National Retiree council, First Command Educational Foundation and the Association for Rescue at Sea where he also served as the association President. In Master Chief Bowen’s spare time he has co-authored a leadership book called Breaching the Summit along with a retired service senior enlisted from each of the other four military services and the National Guard. He also, works with Purdue University Global on their Coast Guard programs.
Michael P. Barrett
Sergeant Major of the Marine Corp, USMC Retired
Micheal P. Barrett served as the 17th Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps from June 9, 2011, to February 20, 2015.

Born and raised in Youngstown, New York, he enlisted in the Marine Corps in March 1981 and underwent recruit training at 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, Delta Company at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina. In November 1981, Barrett completed Infantry Training School at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

He was then ordered for duty to 1st Battalion, 4th Marines in Twentynine Palms, California, and served in a variety of billets from grenadier to platoon sergeant. Barrett was transferred in 1984 to inspector/instructor duty with 2nd Battalion, 25th Marines in New Rochelle, New York. His next assignment was to 3rd Battalion, 9th Marines, where he assumed the responsibilities as platoon sergeant of the Surveillance Target Acquisition Platoon. He forward deployed during the Gulf War with Task Force Papa Bear.

In 1992, Barrett received orders to Drill Instructor School, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego. Upon completion, he was assigned to Company F, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion as a drill instructor, senior drill instructor, and chief drill instructor. In 1994, he was selected as the battalion drill master of 2nd Recruit Training Battalion. In 1995, he was assigned to Scout Sniper Instructor School, Quantico, Virginia, as the chief instructor. In 1996, he was transferred to Marine Security Company, Camp David, for duties as the company gunnery sergeant and liaison to the United States Secret Service.

Upon completion of his tour at Camp David, Barrett was transferred to 3rd Battalion, 4th Marines in Twentynine Palms, where he assumed the duties as India Company first sergeant from 1998 until 2000. Barrett was assigned to Headquarters and Service Company in 2000; his tour culminated as the senior enlisted leader of Weapons Company from 2001 to 2002. Barrett was later assigned to Recruiting Station Cleveland, Ohio, as the recruiting station sergeant major from 2002 through 2005.

He was transferred to 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines in 2005, where he completed two combat deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in the Al Anbar Province, Iraq. From 2007 to 2009, Barrett was assigned to Officer Candidates School in Quantico. He was selected as the 1st Marine Division sergeant major, assumed the duties as I Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward) sergeant major, and deployed to Operation Enduring Freedom in 2010. During this deployment, he also became the NATO Regional Command (Southwest) command sergeant major for Nimruz and Helmand Province, Afghanistan.

During his tenure as Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps, Barrett was a driving force in implementing the new Marine Combat Instructor Ribbon and new PME requirements for enlisted Marines.

Barrett is a graduate of 23 military schools and advanced courses, including the USMC Scout Sniper Instructor School and the U.S. Army Ranger School. His personal awards include the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, two Bronze Star Medals with combat “V” and gold star, Meritorious Service Medal with gold star, Navy Marine Corps Commendation Medal with combat “V” and three gold stars, Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal with two gold stars, Combat Action Ribbon with gold star, and the Presidential Service Badge.

Barrett currently serves as a military advisor to Veterans United Home Loans (VUHL) and sits on the board of directors for the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation and Young Marine National Foundation. He also volunteers for the Marine Corps League, a Veterans Service Organization, and the Armed Services YMCA.

He and his wife, Susan, have two sons and live in Bloomington, Indiana.