A.J.G.M. (André) Odenkirchen

Sergeant Major of the Royal Netherlands Army

Sergeant Major of the Army (SMA) André Odenkirchen was born in Roermond, in the south of the Netherlands, on 19 June 1957. He graduated from high school in 1975 and entered the army engineer corps in March 1976. He received his basic training at the Royal Military Non-Commissioned Officers’ School, followed by his trades training at the Engineer Training Centre.

SMA Odenkirchen’s courses and education include the Instructor’s Course for Officers and NCOs, NBC Course (Key Position), Explosives and Mine Scout Course, Combat Engineer’s Course, including Leopard Bridge Launcher and Leopard Armoured Combat Engineer Vehicle, as well as the Pathfinder Course at Fort Benning. In 2005, he attained a bachelor’s degree with a major in Leadership and Management from the University of Eindhoven in the Netherlands.

SMA Odenkirchen held numerous key positions throughout his career. Most notably, Platoon Sergeant Combat Engineer, Platoon Sergeant Airmobile Engineer, Sergeant Major Operations with 11 Engineer Company Airmobile Brigade, Company Sergeant Major of 11 Engineer Company Airmobile Brigade and Senior Instructor for officers and senior NCOs at the Engineer Training School. His first Command Sergeant Major (CSM) position was with the 11 Mechanised Engineer Battalion, followed by CSM of the 43rd Mechanised Brigade. During his tenure, the 43rd Brigade was designated as the NATO Rapid Response Force 4. His most recent CSM position was CSM TRADOC RNLA.

During his 34-year professional army career, SMA Odenkirchen served for six years in West Germany, completed one tour with UNIFIL in Lebanon, completed two tours of duty in Bosnia and most recently served as CSM of Regional Command South ISAF based in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

His hobbies include cycling, tennis, and soccer. He is married to Annelies, and they have two children, Stephan (born in 1989) and Marloes (born in 1991). In addition to Dutch, he speaks English and German.

Sergeant Major of the Army André Odenkirchen is a graduate of Class 49 of the United States Army Sergeants Major Course.