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Senate confirms first Black 4-star general, Michael E. Langley, in Marine history

U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Michael Langley onboard amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5), May 25, 2022. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Bradley Rickard)

Lt. Gen. Michael E. Langley was confirmed by the Senate on Monday as a four-star general.

He is the first black Marine to attain that rank, according to a press release. He will be promoted to his next rank in a ceremony in Washington, D.C. on Saturday.

President Joe Biden, per the report, nominated Langley in June to lead the U.S. Africa Command, responsible for military operations in Africa.

Langley, who was born in Shreveport, Louisiana, is from a military family. His father, retired U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Willie C. Langley, served in the military for 25 years, while his stepmother, Ola Langley, served the U.S. Post Office.

Langley has commanded Marines at every level from platoon to regiment, serving in Okinawa, Japan and Afghanistan.

As a General Officer, Langley has held billets including Deputy Commanding General for II Marine Expeditionary Force, Commanding General for 2d Marine Expeditionary Brigade, Commander for Marine Forces Europe and Africa, Deputy Commanding general for Fleet Marine Force Atlantic, and Deputy Commander for Marine Forces Command and Marine Forces Northern Command.

Lt. Gen. Langley’s formal military education includes the U.S. Marine Corps Amphibious Warfare School and College of Naval Command and Staff. He holds multiple advanced degrees including a master’s degree in National Security Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College and Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College.


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