10th SMA - Gene C. McKinney

10th SMA - Gene C. McKinney

Born: November 3, 1950, Monticello, Florida


  • 1968 Inducted into service, Basic Training, AIT, Ft. Knox, Kentucky
  • 1968-69 Airborne School, Parachute Riggers Course, Ft. Benning, Georgia
  • 1969-70 Infantryman, 2d Battalion, 503d Infantry, 173d Airborne Brigade, Vietnam
  • 1970-71 Rigger, 612th Quartermaster Battalion, Ft. Bragg, North Carolina (Break in service, 38 days)
  • 1971-73 Scout Team Leader, 1st Battalion 58th Infantry, 197th Infantry Brigade, Ft. Benning, Georgia
  • 1973-77 Squad Leader, Light Armored Vehicle Section Leader, 3d Squadron, 12th Cavalry, 3d Armored Division, Budingen, Germany
  • 1977-83 Scout Section Leader, Communications Sergeant, Platoon Sergeant 3d Squadron and 4th Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, Ft. Bliss, Texas
  • 1983-84 First Sergeant, Fox Troop, 2d Squadron, 2d Armored Cavalry Regiment, Bamberg, Germany
  • 1984-87 First Sergeant, Sergeant Major, Air Cavalry Troop and 4th Squadron (Provisional), 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, Ft. Bliss, Texas
  • 1988 Student, Class #31, Sergeants Major Academy, Ft. Bliss, Texas
  • 1988-90 Command Sergeant Major, 2d Squadron, 2d Armored Cavalry Regiment, Bamberg, Germany
  • 1990 Command Sergeant Major, 1st Brigade, 1st Armored Division, Vilseck, Germany
  • 1990-92 Command Sergeant Major, 8th Infantry Division, Bad Kreuznach, Germany
  • 1992-95 Command Sergeant Major, United States Army, Europe and 7th Army Training Center, Heidelberg, Germany
  • 1995-97 Sergeant Major of the Army
  • 1997-98 Military District of Washington

Significant Accomplishments as SMA
SMA McKinney focused on improving the professionalism of the NCO and Enlisted Corps, and on increasing training, education, pay, facilities, and opportunities for all soldiers and NCOs. During his tenure as SMA, the Army honored the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the position of the SMA with a conference and ceremony at which all ten of the SMAs came and discussed the progress of the Army, soldiers, and the NCO Corps.

Selected Decorations and Awards

  • Legion of Merit
  • Bronze Star Medal with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster
  • Meritorious Service Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters
  • Army Commendation Medal
  • Army Achievement Medal
  • Good Conduct Medal
  • National Defense Service Medal
  • Vietnam Service Medal
  • Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal
  • Combat Infantryman Badge
  • Parachutist Badge

SMA McKinney was suspended from his duties as SMA in 1997 after accusations of misconduct and in March 1998 he was found guilty of obstructing justice. He was reprimanded and reduced in grade to E-8, however the U.S. Code at the time allowed him to retain benefits at the Sergeant Major of the Army level.