By Mr. Matthew D Hickman (ARNEWS)October 13, 2009
U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command Deputy Commanding General and Senior Commander of the Soldier Systems Center Brig. Gen. Harold J. Greene was promoted from colonel on Oct. 9 in a ceremony held at Top of the Bay, Aberdeen Proving Ground.
Greene, a native of upstate New York with 29 years in the U.S. Army, had his new rank pinned on by his wife, Col. Sue Myers, Study Director at the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pa., his daughter Amelia Greene, Maj. Gen. Nickolas G. Justice, Program Executive Officer for the Program Executive Office Command, Control and Communications at Fort Monmouth, N.J., and Lt. Gen. Stephen M. Speakes, U.S. Army Deputy Chief of Staff, G-8.
"When you look at a leader like [Greene] what you're looking at is somebody who has that singular ability to display wisdom, and wisdom is a combination of a great background, a great sense of self, a sense of humility, and the ability to work extraordinarily hard, and [Greene] has all those qualities in ample profusion and proliferation," Speakes said commenting on Greene's qualifications.
"He has the rare abilities to make others better, and that's something very special too because at the level he's at right now his ability to inspire others, to show others the way, is so important as well," Speakes added.
Greene, who holds a Ph.D. from the University of Southern California in Materials Science, gained these abilities over time as he served the U.S. Army at Fort Polk, La., Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., Fort Monmouth, N.J., and the Pentagon as well as Athens, Greece and Istanbul, Turkey. Speakes believes RDECOM is lucky Greene has settled at Aberdeen Proving Ground.
"[Greene] is the right person for this great organization and I'm thrilled that he's a part of what's a really remarkable team. You will be a part of...a wonderful period in the time of this extraordinary command because RDECOM, as the seminal place in today's Army, is overlooking very difficult issues," Speakes said noting that RDECOM has had to make crucial decisions for the U.S. Army.
Greene remained humble as he spoke, not of himself, but of his friends, family, and senior leaders he worked for that influenced him and taught him valuable lessons throughout his career.
"What I learned from [Speakes] was the ability to maintain a polite and professional relationship with people under incredible stress. That attitude of mentorship and training and trying to help subordinates move forward is something I'll take with me," Greene said of his working relationship with Speakes while at the Pentagon.
The other qualities that Greene credits with his success include a sense of innovation, the ability to let subordinates make important decisions, the ability to ask the right questions, and a stoic characteristic.
"In every job I had we got things done that I think made our Army better, and it was done by other people...all I did was try to pull people in the right direction and they went and did great things. So the reason I'm up here is not what I did, but what all of you did. I know it was truly you guys and gals that did the work the Army recognized today, and for that I thank you," Green said stating his success was a team effort.
"I was very lucky. I worked with tremendous people, and over the years I was honored to have jobs where I could work with great people and we could get great things done," he added.