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John Michael Bednarek is a former United States Army officer. He was chief of the United States Office of Security Cooperation in Iraq and former commander of the United States First Army.[2][3][4] Bednarek took command of the First Army on April 6, 2011, from Lieutenant General Thomas G. Miller and was succeeded as commanding officer by Major General Kevin R. Wendel on March 14, 2013 (interim), with Lieutenant General Michael S. Tucker succeeding Bednarek as permanent commander on August 2, 2013.[1][3][5][6]

John Michael Bednarek
John M. Bednarek (3).jpg
Bednarek in 2011
BornLondon, United Kingdom[1]
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Army[2]
Years of service1975–2015
RankUS-O9 insignia.svg Lieutenant General
Commands heldOffice of Security Cooperation-Iraq
United States First Army
25th Infantry Division
AwardsDefense Distinguished Service Medal
Army Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal
Legion of Merit (four oak leaf clusters)
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal (five oak leaf clusters)



Bednarek received his commission through a reserve officer training program upon his graduation from Old Dominion University.[1][2] He has held commands within every level of the Army, ranging from platoon to field army.[2] Bednarek has also served as the Chief of the Training Group at the Joint Warfighting Center, the Chief of the Operations Group at the Joint Readiness Training Center, and Commander of the 4th Training Brigade.[2] In June 2008 Bednarek was given command of the First Army's East Division and on April 6, 2011, Bednarek took command of the United States First Army.[1][3][7] He served as commander of the First Army until March 14, 2013, when he was assigned as Chief of the Office of Security Cooperation (OSC) in Iraq.[3] As OSC chief, Bednarek was the highest ranking American military officer in Iraq and was involved in US efforts against the Islamic State in the Iraqi Civil War.[8] Bednarek has also attended Troy State University where he received a MS in personal management, the US Army Command and General Staff College, and the US Army War College.[2] Bednarek retired from service on July 24, 2015.[9]

Awards and decorationsEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d Smith, Johanna (August 14, 2012). "Lieutenant General J. Michael Bednarek, Commanding General, First Army". Rotary Club of Davenport. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Lieutenant General John M. Bednarek" (PDF). United States Army. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d "Lt. Gen. Mick Bednarek to relinquish command of First Army". Moline Dispatch & Rock Island Argus. March 4, 2013. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
  4. ^ "Blog: Bednarek Assigned to Office of Security Cooperation-Iraq". SIGNAL Media. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
  5. ^ Rodesky-Flores, Danette (April 7, 2011). "Bednarek takes command of First Army". US Army. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
  6. ^ Lamansky, Katrina (August 2, 2013). "Lt. Gen. Tucker assumes command of First Army in Rock Island". WQAD-8. Retrieved 11 February 2017.
  7. ^ Bieltz, Brandon (March 11, 2011). "Bednarek to lead First Army Division East and West". US Army. Retrieved 12 February 2017.
  8. ^ Tan, Michelle (August 7, 2014). "Top U.S. officer in Iraq: 'We must neutralize this enemy'". Military Times. Archived from the original on 7 August 2014. Retrieved 12 February 2017.
  9. ^ "Lt. Gen. John M. Bednarek retirement". US Army. July 24, 2015. Retrieved 12 February 2017.

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Military offices
Preceded by
Thomas G. Miller
Commanding General of the First United States Army
Succeeded by
Kevin R. Wendel (interim)