Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Robert Catalanotti

By AMY TURNEROctober 4, 2022

2022 Hall of Fame Inductee

Worcester Polytechnic Institute (1980)

(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Robert G. Catalanotti was born on September 7, 1958, in Boston, Massachusetts.

He attended Assumption College where he got his degree in psychology and social rehabilitation with minors on English and military history. While pursuing his education, Catalanotti also pursuing a career with the Army. He completed the Army ROTC program through Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

He graduated and received his commission in 1980 into the Adjutant General Corp. Catalanotti has commanded at every level from platoon through division and has served in key staff positions over his career.

Catalanotti deployed during the early stages of Operation Iraqi Freedom and commanded Camp Taji, Iraq from 2004 to 2005. At that time, it was the largest Iraqi training base in theater and was responsible for training 15,000 Iraqi soldiers, with leadership responsibility for over 1,000 coalition force members stationed there.

He was board selected to command the 98th Training Division, Rochester, New York, a 2-star command billet as a newly promoted brigadier general. He had previously served as the chief of staff at the division prior to his command. As the commanding general of the 98th Training Division, he assumed command responsibility for seven brigades throughout the United States eastern region from 2007 to 2008.

Catalanotti was hand-selected by the U.S. Secretary of State and General David Petraeus, Commander, USCENTCOM to serve under the Department of State as the senior advisor and program manager for the Security Assistance Organization to the Ministry of Interior of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This assignment entailed building a 35,000-man infrastructure security force to protect the kingdom’s critical resources of oil, water desalination and power facilities from foreign aggression from 2008 to 2012.

His service concluded with United States Central Command (USCENTCOM), Tampa, Florida from 2012 to 2014, as the Director of Strategic Exercises and Training. In this position, he was responsible for planning and executing training and exercises for sixteen Middle Eastern and Central Asian counties to build bilateral and multilateral relationships.

Catalanotti retired on September 30, 2014. His awards and accolades include the Army Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal and the Legion of Merit Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with Silver Hourglass, M Device, and Army Numeral, Army Service Ribbon and Army Overseas Service Ribbon.

He continued to contribute to the defense of the nation after his military service. He was hand-selected by then U.S. Secretary of Defense, Mr. James Mattis, to serve as Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs in 2017 to 2019.

About the Army ROTC Hall of Fame

The ROTC Hall of Fame was established in 2016 as part of the ROTC Centennial celebration. The first class (2016) inducted 326 former ROTC Cadets who had distinguished themselves in their military or civilian career.

The Hall of Fame honors graduates of the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps who have distinguished themselves in military or civilian pursuits. It provides a prestigious and tangible means of recognizing and honoring Army ROTC Alumni who have made lasting, significant contributions to the Nation, the Army and the history and traditions of the Army ROTC Program.

Read more about the 2022 Hall of Fame Inductees.