By 1st Sgt. John Etheridge
Utah Army National Guard
The Utah National Guard welcomed its new assistant adjutant general-Army at a change-of-command ceremony March 13, 2022, at its headquarters building in Draper, Utah.
During the ceremony, Brig. Gen. Tyler B. Smith relinquished his position as the assistant adjutant general-Army, Utah National Guard, to Brig. Gen. Joseph W. Green.
Preceding the promotion and change-of-command, Green was awarded the Legion of Merit in recognition for his service in his former position as the chief of staff of the Utah Army National Guard.
In his comments before the award presentation, Maj. Gen. Michael Turley, adjutant general, Utah National Guard, referenced the invocation where the chaplain asked for Green to be blessed with both confidence and humility in his new position.
“I think we found the person who has that,” said Turley. “I think Joey [Greene] is the kind of person that has that balance of knowing he can do things well and smart, but also has that humility that says, I don’t know everything and I’m certainly not in control of everything.”
“Promotions are not for things we have done in the past,” continued Turley, “promotions are really for the future and what we will ask of you in the future. Joey is in that position because the organization needs him to be in that leadership position.”
Green was joined on stage for his promotion by his spouse and children who pinned his new rank on his uniform and garrison cap. Following the promotion, Green gave special thanks to his wife and presented her with 28 roses, one rose for each year she has supported him in his military career.
During the change of command, Smith passed the organizational colors to Green representing the transfer of command and responsibility for the organization to the incoming officer.
Smith, who has served as the assistant adjutant general-Army since July, 2018, Thanked his coworkers and spoke of the most memorable moments in his tenure as the AAG-Army.
“The most memorable thing that I will treasure always is the opportunity that I had to go around and visit Soldiers in their environment, whether they were training, going to schools, on missions, or coming home from deployments,” said Smith. “It is one of the roles as a general officer to inspire the troops, and I have to say that it is I that has been inspired from the Soldiers in this organization.”
In his comments, Green thanked his family and wife as well as Smith for being a role model and mentor.
“Brig. Gen. Smith, I’m such a big fan of yours. I love your calm and reason in matters of discipline and training,” said Green. “I’m going to be hard pressed to model that. I will miss you. And I will call you.”
Green continued his remarks recounting a story from his experience in the early years of the Iraq war. He was standing on a hill in Baghdad with his team and they weren’t doing well. He thought to himself that he had been trained during the Cold War years to fight Russian tanks and he now found himself in Iraq in a new role fighting counter insurgency.
“I felt I wasn’t ready, and I should be ready,” said Green.
He recounted that when he got back from his Iraq deployment he spent years working with his colleagues to ensure his Soldiers would be ready for future engagements so no Soldier would ever share the same feeling he had of unpreparedness in Baghdad.
Invoking poems by William Butler Yates and Mary Oliver, Green verbalized that he was ready for his new and challenging position.
“Gen. Turley, I’m fully awake, I’m fully ignited,” said Green
Green’s most recent prior assignments include serving as the chief of staff for the Utah Army National Guard since Aug. 2019, and serving as the commander of the 300thMilitary Intelligence Brigade (Linguist).
Smith is scheduled to retire from military service a few days following the change of command.
Your Career Starts Here