Fort Leonard Wood celebrates promotion of major general

FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. -- Major General Donna Martin was promoted Tuesday morning from Brigadier General just before the ceremony where she was named commanding general of the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence here at Ft. Leonard Wood.

Martin takes the commanding general position from Major General Kent Savre, making her the first woman - and first African American woman - to hold that position.

"It doesn't matter that you're a woman. The Army will select the right person for the right job at the right time, and I'm just so thankful and I'm very humble that I am that person at this time," Martin told reporters after the ceremony.

As Commanding General of the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence, Major General Martin will oversee the training of the Army's Military Police, Engineers, as well as the Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Soldiers, Civilians, and Officers.

"She has been a role model, she rolls up her sleves, and she's all about what's best for the soldiers and our families," Savre said.

Martin's love of the U.S. Army started over 30 years ago while in college at Old Dominion University in Virginia. At the time, she wasn't sure she wanted to go the military route.

"When I went to college, I needed to find those people who were kind of like me. I found a group of kids who were service oriented, who wanted to serve, and be a part of something that was bigger than themselves. That stuck with me," Martin said. "It's all about service."

Since joining the Army, Martin has believed the military has always provided great opportunities for the young generation, and says it's just as important today than it's ever been.

"There's 150 career fields and opportunities. The difference for young kids today, even if you're graduating from college, you might not walk right into a job because you don't have any experience. The military provides that experience," Martin said. "It's a structured, disciplined setting where, I think, sets you up for success in any endeavor you take."

Now that all the pomp and circumstance has ended, Martin says she is excited for her new role, and is looking forward to training the future of our military.

ORIGINAL STORY: History is made at Fort Leonard Wood.

The post celebrated the promotion of Brigadier General Donna Martin as the new Commanding General of the Maneuver Support Center. Martin is noted as a "trailblazer" being the first woman and African-American Woman to hold this title here at Fort Leonard Wood. She does not consider herself to be a "trailblazer."

"I don't consider myself a trailblazer but I do want young women to look at me and say, 'anything is possible," said Major General Martin. "I think that if you work hard, and you really believe in yourself, you can achieve anything that you absolutely set your mind to."

With her new title, Major General Martin is responsible for training the Army's military police, engineers, as well as the chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear soldiers, civilians, and officers. Major General Kent Savre retired Monday after 34 years of service to the United States Army.