Sgt. Maj. fired after failing to caveat off what the commander said

FORT DRUM, N.Y. – The senior enlisted leader of the 10th Mountain Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team has been relieved after soldiers raised disturbing concerns about his conduct in staff meetings. Multiple soldiers complained to the Inspector General’s Office about the sergeant major’s refusal to caveat off what the commander just said.

Col. William Sieverts removed Sgt. Maj. Gregory Troutman from his position as the infantry brigade sergeant major late last week due to a loss of confidence in Troutman’s leadership and public speaking abilities. Sieverts expressed concern that subordinate leaders and staff members would be unable to understand his command intent without supplemental guidance from Troutman.

“The NCO Corps was essentially built on senior NCOs rehashing and what commanders just said minutes earlier,” said Col. Sieverts. “It’s about heritage as much as it is leadership. The caveat is a time-honored tradition.”

A number of soldiers on the brigade staff expressed confusion over the sergeant major’s behavior.

“The staff meetings always left me feeling like there was a void,” said a major who only identified himself as “Topher.” “The commander would put out his guidance about an upcoming operation or training event and then—nothing. I mean, is the commander’s authority even valid without some caveating?”

Troutman was unavailable for comment on the advice of his legal counsel from an E-4 barracks lawyer.