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Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to Speak at 2024 Battle Standard Dinner

SEAC Troy Black

KINGS POINT, New York, March 26, 2024 – Capt. Mikel Stroud, USMS, Commandant of Midshipmen at the United States Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA), announced that Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (SEAC) Troy Black will deliver the keynote address at the 2024 Battle Standard Dinner, on Thursday, April 4th. The Battle Standard Dinner is an annual event, hosted by the Senior Class to honor the memories of USMMA’s cadet-midshipmen who lost their lives during World War II.

Sergeant Major Black assumed his current post as the 5th Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Nov. 3rd, 2023, following his selection and service as the 19th Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps.  A native of Louisville, Kentucky, he attended recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C., in April of 1988 and attended the School of Infantry and Marine Corps Security Force School.

Throughout his career, SEAC Black has been assigned numerous duties to include: 0331 Machine Gunner, Machine Gun Squad and Section Leader; Weapons Platoon Sergeant and Weapons Platoon Commander; Drill Instructor, Senior Drill Instructor, Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team Company (FAST) Platoon Sergeant and Operations Chief, Series Gunnery Sergeant, DI School Instructor, and RTR Drill Master;  First Sergeant, G Company 2d Bn, 1st Marines, E Company 3d Amphibious Assault Battalion, Officer Candidates School; Sergeant Major, 3d Bn, 7th Marines, Combat Logistics Battalion 5, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, 1st Marine Logistics Group, and Manpower and Reserve Affairs.

He has deployed aboard the USS Forrestal (CV-59) in support of Operation Just Cause and to the Mediterranean in 1989 ; deployed in support of Operation Sea Soldier, Desert Storm/Desert Shield, and Sea Angel with 3rd Bn, 5th Marines in 1990, and to Okinawa in 1992; deployed with FAST Company in support of 5
th and 6th Fleet operations to Bahrain, Italy, Pearl Harbor, and Bangor Washington; deployed to Iraq with 2d Bn, 1st Marines in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II (OIF) in 2004; deployed with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) during Operation Bright Star and to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom IV (OIF) in 2005; to Afghanistan with 3d Bn, 7th Marines in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in 2010; deployed with Combat Logistics Battalion 5 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in 2012; and deployed in support of WESTPAC 14.2 and Operation Inherent Resolve with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit in 2014.

SEAC Black’s personal awards include the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit w/ 2 Gold Star’s, Bronze Star w/ Combat Distinguishing Device, Meritorious Service Medal w/ 2 Gold Stars, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal w/ Combat Distinguishing Device and 3 Gold Stars, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal w/ Gold Star and the Combat Action Ribbon with 2 Gold Stars.

SEAC Black has a Bachelor of Science in Terrorism and Counterterrorism Studies from National American University and graduated from the Joint Special Operations Forces Senior Enlisted Academy December of 2011.  

Of the Nation’s five federal service academies, USMMA is the only one authorized to carry a battle standard as part of its Regimental Color Guard. USMMA’s midshipmen have put themselves in harm’s way in every action from WWII to this day. During WWII, 142 cadet-midshipmen joined vessels, but never returned The Academy’s Battle Standard proudly commemorates and perpetuates the memory of the 142 cadet-midshipmen who gave the last full measure of devotion in World War II. In their memory, the Battle Standard bears the number “142.”

The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, located in Kings Point, N.Y, educates and graduates leaders of exemplary character who are inspired to serve the national security, marine transportation, and economic needs of the United States as licensed Merchant Marine Officers and commissioned officers in the Armed Forces. The Academy, which was established under the Merchant Marine Act of 1936, was dedicated as the United States Merchant Marine Academy in 1943 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. It is administered by the Maritime Administration under the auspices of the Department of Transportation.

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