ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. -- A First Army Soldier has reached the pinnacle of the enlisted ranks. Sgt. Maj. Michael Miller was promoted from master sergeant during a ceremony on Nov. 13 in First Army headquarters here. Miller serves as the operations noncommissioned officer for First Army's Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, United States Army Reserve Support Command.

Maj. Gen. Paul Benenati, First Army deputy commanding general for support, remarked on how noteworthy it was for Miller to be pinning on his new rank.

"By law, only one and a quarter percent of enlisted Soldiers can reach the rank of sergeant major," Benenati said. "So, Sergeant Maj. Miller, congratulations. You truly are at the top of your game. You have been recognized by the Secretary of the Army as possessing the talents that enable you to assume the duties and responsibilities of this rank."

A 29-year veteran, Miller has served in all three Army components: Active Army, Army Reserve, and the National Guard. His awards and badges include the Meritorious Service Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, the Sapper Tab, the Air Assault Badge, and the Senior Parachute Badge. Benenati told Miller, "It is that background that has prepared you for where you're going."

After Benenati pinned on the new rank, Miller addressed attendees.

"Come February, I will have 30 years of service in this great Army, and I thought promotion to sergeant major was an opportunity I had missed," he said. "Now I am excited to move on with my career and look forward to what lies ahead."

Miller will be transferring to the 97th Training Brigade at Fort Sheridan, Ill., to serve as the unit's operations sergeant major.

First Army, as U.S. Forces Command's designated coordinating authority for implementation of the Army Total Force Policy, partners with U.S. 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 both pre-and post-mobilization through multicomponent integrated collective training, enabling FORSCOM to provide combatant commanders trained and ready forces in support of worldwide requirements.