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US military’s top enlisted leader is reinstated after investigation

Army Command Sgt. Maj. John W. Troxell, senior enlisted advisor to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, makes a point as he and the senior enlisted leaders for the U.S. combatant commands brief Pentagon reporters at the conclusion of a conference, Nov. 28, 2017. (Army Sgt. Amber I. Smith/Department of Defense)

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said Thursday that he reinstated his senior enlisted adviser after an Army Inspector General investigation found he had violated ethics rules.

Army Command Sgt. Maj. John Troxell was temporarily removed from his position in September and assigned as a special assistant to the vice director of the Joint Staff during the investigation, which concluded in late February, according to the Pentagon.

The investigation by the Inspector General’s Office substantiated two complaints against Troxell. The violations include improperly using military personnel to carry out tasks outside of their official duties such as personal errands and improperly endorsing commercial fitness and nutrition products on his official military social media accounts, according to a Pentagon statement.

However, Troxell did not receive any personal or monetary gain from the endorsements, according to the Pentagon statement.

Troxell was reinstated after Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, reviewed the investigation and “took appropriate administrative action.” In the statement, Dunford said he weighed the gravity of the ethics violations by Troxell against his 37 years of military service.

“Appropriate corrective action has been taken and I’m confident that [Troxell] has learned from this experience. I am equally confident in his competence and capability to continue serving as our senior enlisted leader, which is why I reinstated him to his duties as [senior enlisted adviser],” Dunford said in the statement. “Now it’s time to move on and get back to the important work we have before us.”

Troxell became the senior enlisted adviser to Dunford in December of 2015. In that role, Troxell serves as the principal military adviser to Dunford and the defense secretary on issues pertaining to the enlisted force, such as military standards, professional development, pay and promotion, quality of life and awards.


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