• Gervais promoted to major general

  • Gervais becomes major general.

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  • Christopher Burnett | Staff Writer
    Brig. Gen. Maria Gervais, deputy commanding general for Combined Arms Center–Training, was promoted to major general in a private ceremony June 9 on Main Parade.
    Commissioned in 1987, Gervais was a distinguished military graduate of the Lander College Reserve Officer Training Corps program in Greenwood, S.C., and was subsequently assigned to the Army Chemical Corps. She is married to retired Lt. Col. Chris Gervais. They have one daughter, Capt. Brandi Gervais, who is an Army dentist.
    “I recognize this promotion is a great honor,” Gervais said. “I also understand the great responsibility that goes with it.”
    Maj. Gen. Robert Dyess, acting director of the Army Capabilities Integration Center in Fort Eustis, Va., officiated the promotion ceremony. He said military service across several generations of the Gervais family was fundamental to positive character building.
    “In looking over Maria’s background information, two things struck me. The first was an obvious sense of duty within her family,” Dyess said. “I added a total of seven people who had served a combined number of 117 years of military service. And, three among those seven individuals — Maria, Chris and her dad — had 11 combat tours between them.”
    Dyess said Gervais was born at Homestead Air Force Base, Fla., at the same time her father was transferring his service from the Air Force to the Army. He said there was debate among officials from the two military branches as to which service would pay the resultant hospital costs associated with her birth.
    “Those deliberations went on for about six months, and the Army ultimately paid the bill,” Dyess said. “It’s safe to say we got the best of that deal — having been paid back many times over by her service to the Army and our nation.”
    Gervais’ awards include two Legions of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal, seven Meritorious Service Medals and two Joint Service Commendation Medals. Her campaign awards include the Iraqi Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. Additionally, Gervais has earned the Parachutist Badge, the Air Assault Badge, the Joint Staff Identification Badge, the Army Staff Identification Badge and the Joint Meritorious Unit Award, among numerous other awards and decorations.
    Dyess said Gervais had served in a variety of command and staff assignments at every level. These included overseas assignments at Augsburg, Kaiserslautern and Nelligen in Germany, as well as service in Baghdad, Iraq. Her career includes assignments at the Pentagon and with units based in Edgewood Arsenal, Md., Fort Campbell, Ky., Fort Hood, Texas, Fort Knox, Ky. and Fort Leonard Wood, Mo.
    After her promotion ceremony, Gervais thanked invitees and distinguished guests who traveled to attend the occasion on what she said was short notice.
    Page 2 of 2 - “I sincerely appreciate each of you for literally dropping everything to be here for this significant milestone for my family and me,” Gervais said.
    Before her assignment to CAC-T, Gervais was the commandant of the U.S. Army Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear School at Fort Leonard Wood. She has a bachelor of science degree in biology from Lander College and a master of arts in human resources from Webster University. Her military education includes the Chemical Officer Basic and Advanced courses, the Command and General Staff Officer Course and the U.S. Army War College, where she received a master of military strategic studies degree.
    “My goal is to continue heeding my dad’s advice to strive to do the very best job I can continually,” Gervais said, “and always value the trust and confidence others place in me to continue serving our Army on behalf of our great nation.”
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