Command Sgt. Maj. Diane E. Williams
Commandant of U.S. Army Sergeants Major Academy
1973 - 2003
Command Sgt. Maj. Diane E. Williams, a native of Port Arthur, Texas entered the Army in 1973 at the tail end of the Women’s Army Corps and became a trail blazer for women thereon forward. She has held every leadership position from squad leader to command sergeant major at the brigade level. Her major accomplishments in the Army occurred after she completed the Sergeants Major Course, Class 42. From there, Williams was assigned as the first female Command Sergeant Major of the 2nd Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment, and in 1998 she became the first female to serve as an Aviation Brigade command sergeant major serving as the command sergeant major for the Aviation Training Brigade, Fort Rucker, AL. In 2005, after 30 years of faithful service to her country and two years of enjoying retirement, she returned to the military life; this time as an Associate Professor at the United States Sergeant Major Academy.
Here, Williams dedicated herself to the improvement of NCO education by ensuring our senior noncommissioned officers had the tools to effectively communicate. Beyond her contributions as an instructor and coach, perhaps her largest contribution lies within her efforts to improve the USASMA and the NCO Leadership Center of Excellence writing program. Diane visionary efforts in the importance of improving the writing capabilities of our enlisted senior leaders led to her being selected to reorganize and develop additional materials for the English Writing and APA lesson for the Sergeants Major Course, thus enhancing student understanding. Williams was the only instructor selected to brief the entire student body on the Introduction to Writing Lesson for five consecutive years where she also planned, organized, and executed the Haines research competition.
Additional contributions towards the education of USASMA student consisted of Diane volunteering to teach the International Pre-Course curriculum for eight consecutive years. Because of this, she was selected from among her peers to participate in the working group with Command and General Staff College representatives shaping the integration of the CGSC curriculum into the Sergeants Major Course which began in 2009. She recommended modifications in scheduling, lesson progression and timing of different assignment deadlines to improve sequencing and departmental efficiency during the transition. Diane Williams has directly instructed, coached and mentored more than 1,120 senior enlisted leaders from all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces and our allied nations who attended the USASMA. During the last 14 years Diane has also positively influenced, either directly or indirectly, more than 8,820 senior military leaders from the United States and our International partners.