JOINT BASE MYER-HENDERSON HALL, Va. — Lt. Gen. Leslie C. Smith, the 66th Inspector General of the Army, was honored for more than 35 years of Army service in a retirement ceremony at Conmy Hall Aug. 27.
Smith has served as The Inspector General (TIG) since February 2018. Before that, he served as Deputy, The Inspector General (DTIG) from April 2015 until becoming TIG.
“I am humbled to have served with you for the past six years,” he said of his time in the IG system.
Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville hosted the event, and lauded Smith’s contributions to the Army and the Inspector General system.
“You have been phenomenal in supporting Army Senior Leaders … through some unprecedented challenges,” McConville said.
McConville presented Smith with the Distinguished Service Medal. McConville’s wife, Maria, presented Smith’s wife, Vanedra, with the Army Distinguished Public Service Medal for her many years of working with Army families.
Smith, a native of Atlanta, graduated in 1985 from Georgia Southern University with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He also completed Army ROTC and earned a commission as a field artillery officer in 1983 with the Georgia Army National Guard. After entering active duty service, he transferred to the Chemical Corps.
He also holds a Master of Science in Administration from Central Michigan University, as well as a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from National Defense University.
During his career, he served in a number of command and staff positions. Of note, he served as a joint staff non-proliferation planner, and he commanded the 83d Chemical Battalion and the 3d Chemical Brigade. He deployed to the Middle East for Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, and to Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
As a general officer, served as the Chief of Chemical and the Commandant of the CBRNE School, the 20th Support Command–Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosives (CBRNE) command. Smith also served as the commanding general of the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence and Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri—the first Chemical Corps officer in either command position.
Additionally, he was the first Chemical Corps officer to serve as The Inspector General of the Army.
Smith attributed his success to his family, and took much inspiration from his father, an Army veteran of the Korean War who died when Smith was 5 years old. Many of his siblings and other family members also served in the military.
“We are very proud of our family’s service, and we believe in service as a family to this nation,” he said.
Col. Isaac Manigault, the Investigations Division chief of the U.S. Army Inspector General Agency and former acting DTIG, remarked on Smith’s ability to engage with everyone he met. “He emphasized the importance of family, communication, relationships, hard work, and building trust,” Manigault said. “He always made everyone feel important.”
The family’s Army connections don’t end with Lt. Gen. Smith’s retirement. His younger daughter, Tori, is a second lieutenant studying medicine at Howard University in Washington, D.C. His older daughter, Taylor, is a civilian graphic designer.
Smith and his wife will continue to reside in the Washington area.
Maj. Gen. Donna Martin will become the 67th Inspector General of the Army and receive a promotion to lieutenant general on Sept. 2 at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall. Martin was previously the Provost Marshal General and the commanding general of the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command.