Teresa King

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Teresa L. King
US Army 51278 It's Showtime, King takes reins at Drill Sergeant School.jpg
Born 1961
Clinton, North Carolina
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1980-2013
Rank Command Sergeant Major
Unit XVIII Airborne Corps

Teresa L. King (born 1961, Clinton, North Carolina) is a retired Sergeant Major in the United States Army. She was the first female Commandant of the United States Army Drill Sergeant School at Fort Jackson, South Carolina.[1]

Early life[edit]

King was born in Clinton, North Carolina,[2] the eighth of twelve children. Her father was a sharecropper who grew cucumbers and tobacco.

Army career[edit]

King enlisted in the United States Army in 1980 and went to Basic Combat Training and Advanced Individual Training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. After training, King's first assignment was as a postal clerk in the 139th Postal Company located in Stuttgart, Germany.

She volunteered for two years of drill sergeant duty and graduated from the United States Army Drill Sergeant School.[3] She was later assigned to 5th Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, at Fort Dix, New Jersey. She later served as the battalion's personnel sexual assault director (SAD).[4]

In 1987, King served as the administrative assistant to the Chief of Staff of the United States Army at the Pentagon. In 1988, she became the administrative assistant to the Director of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, or DSCA (formerly the Defense Security Assistance Agency, or DSAA), Office of the Secretary of Defense, also at the Pentagon. In 1991, King was assigned as aid to the Senior Enlisted Advisor of the Director of the DSCA, Office of the Secretary of Defense. She served there until 1993.

King left the Pentagon and was assigned to 18th Personnel Service Battalion at Fort Bragg, North Carolina until 1996. King then served as the First Sergeant for 19th Adjutant General Company (Postal) at Camp Casey, South Korea until 1997. In 1997, King became the first female First Sergeant for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, XVIII Airborne Corps, the largest company on Fort Bragg. King held that assignment until 2001.

From 2002-2005, she served as Command Sergeant Major of 3rd Battalion, 13th Infantry Regiment tasked with Basic Combat Training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. She was inducted into the Order of St Maurice, Patron Saint of the Infantry, in 2005.

In 2005, King was assigned as the battalion Command Sergeant Major of the Supreme Headquarters, Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) battalion, United States Army, NATO for two years. In 2007, she was assigned as the Command Sergeant Major of 369th Adjutant General Battalion in Fort Jackson, South Carolina for another two years. In 2009, King was appointed as Commandant of the Drill Sergeant School, the first female in history. She served as Commandant until mid-2012.

In early 2012 King was placed on suspension from her duties for six months and investigated for undisclosed reasons.[5]

According to the Army Times "She has served in South Korea and Europe, and held jobs at NATO and the Pentagon, yet despite those accomplishments, she has not deployed to either Iraq or Afghanistan through 10 years of war."

King retired effective May 31, 2013, and was awarded the Legion of Merit.[6]


King holds an associate degree in General Studies from Northern Virginia Community College.[citation needed]


Decorations, Service Medals and Ribbons



  1. ^ U.S. Army Names 1st Female Drill Sergeant School Commandant At Fort Jackson, WJBF News, AP article, July 9, 2009. Retrieved December 9, 2009.
  2. ^ Army picks first female commandant to lead Drill Sergeant School By Crystal Lewis Brown. U.S. Army News, July 30, 2009
  3. ^ A new commander to train US drill sergeants? Yes, ma'am! by Patrik Jonsson, The Christian Science Monitor, July 13, 2009
  4. ^ Command Sergeant Major Teresa L. King, Fort Jackson Drill Sergeant School web page. Retrieved December 9, 2009.
  5. ^ http://archive.armytimes.com/article/20111213/NEWS/112130333/Army-suspends-drill-sergeant-school-chief
  6. ^ Joe Gould, Army Times, Ex-Drill Sergeant School Chief Retires - With Honors, June 3, 2013

External links[edit]