By U.S. Army Band Public AffairsOctober 6, 2011
Sgt. Maj. Mitchell D. Spray was appointed to the position of command sergeant major and senior enlisted advisor of The United States Army Band "Pershing's Own" Sept. 28. Col. Thomas H. Palmatier, TUSAB's ninth leader and commander, conferred the position on Spray making him the third command sergeant major of the Army's premier musical organization.
Prior to his appointment to command sergeant major, Spray served as drum major, a role which gave him the distinct honor of leading the members of "Pershing's Own" in presidential inaugural parades and state funeral processions.
"The position of command sergeant major is special in America's Army," said Palmatier. "It is reserved for those senior noncommissioned officers who have consistently demonstrated 'what right looks like,' and serve as not only mentors and examples to their Soldiers, but also serve as the commander's closest advisor and 'battle buddy.' The Soldiers of 'Pershing's Own' are fortunate to have a command sergeant major like Mitch Spray and I look forward to serving by his side."
Spray enlisted in the Army in 1982 and joined the ranks of "Pershing's Own" in 1992, after attending the Army's Primary Leadership Development, Basic and Advanced NCO Courses. He holds the designation of master training specialist at the Armed Forces School of Music. In his new position, Spray said he is committed "to maintaining an atmosphere of professionalism, competence, and a genuine love of performing music," and also feels the position is "a wonderful way to wind up an incredible career!"
TUSAB is designated as a special band and is made up of 270 active-duty musicians and support staff who perform over 5,000 missions annually, providing morale and welfare entertainment, community outreach, and musical support to troops, the public at large and senior leadership of the Army and our nation.