Commanding General

Commanding General United States Army
Lieutenant General
Thomas S. James, Jr.

Commanding General
First Army Headquarters
Rock Island Arsenal, IL 61299
October 09, 2018

Lt. Gen. Thomas S. James Jr. became the 39th commander of First Army on October 9, 2018.

As U.S. Forces Command’s designated coordinating authority for the implementation of Army Total Force Policy, First Army partners with Army Reserve and Army National Guard leadership to advise, assist and train Reserve Component formations to achieve Department of the Army directed readiness requirements during pre- and post-mobilization training.

LTG James was commissioned as an armor officer through The Citadel in 1985. He served as a Tank Platoon Leader and Executive Officer in D/3-37 Armor at Fort Riley, Kans. Following the Infantry Advanced Course, he deployed to Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm as the Plans Officer for 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division in Aschaffenburg, Germany, subsequently commanding A/4-66 Armor and C/2-68 Armor.

He then served as Aide-de-Camp to the Commanding General, 1st Armored Division in Bad Kreuznach, Germany. Following attendance at the Command and General Staff College and the School of Advanced Military Studies, he again served with the 3ID as Division G-35; S-3 for 1-64 Armor; and S-3 for 2nd Brigade, 3ID. He returned to Germany as the G-35 for V Corps, before commanding 1st Battalion, 37th Armor during its preparation for and deployment to Operation Iraqi Freedom I. While deployed, he also served as the G3, 1AD.

Upon completion of the National War College, he served as the Chief of the TRADOC Command Planning Group and subsequently commanded 4th Brigade, 3ID, including another OIF deployment. Upon departure from brigade command, he served as the 3ID Chief of Staff and the 3ID Deputy Commander (Maneuver), completing another deployment to Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn. Upon appointment as a general officer, LTG James served as the Commandant of the Armor School at Fort Benning Ga., the Deputy Commanding General (Maneuver) of 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, the Director of the Mission Command Center of Excellence at Ft. Leavenworth, Kans., and the FORSCOM G-3/5/7 at Fort Bragg, N.C. He then served as the Commanding General of 7th Infantry Division at Fort Lewis, Wash., before becoming Director of Operations of United Nations Command, Combined Forces Command, and United States Forces Korea.

LTG James’ awards and decorations include: Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit (four OLC); Bronze Star Medal (four OLC); Meritorious Service Medal (two OLC); Army Commendation Medal (three OLC); Army Achievement Medal (with Silver Oak Leaf Cluster and 4 OLC); Combat Action Badge; Parachutist Badge; and the Ranger Tab.

LTG James holds a Master of Science from both the School of Advanced Military Studies and the National Defense University.