Grinston will be first retired enlisted soldier to head Army Emergency Relief
Stars and Stripes November 15, 2023
Recently retired Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael Grinston is slated to become the new leader of Army Emergency Relief, a nonprofit agency that helps soldiers with a range of financial needs.
Grinston will take over as director on Jan. 1, making him the first former enlisted soldier to hold the position, Army Emergency Relief said in a statement Saturday.
Grinston will replace retired Lt. Gen. Raymond V. Mason, who has done the job since 2017.
The Army’s former top noncommissioned officer said that he is already getting his feet wet, working alongside Mason’s team to get up to speed.
Being a prior enlisted soldier will bring “additional pressure,” Grinston said in a LinkedIn post last week. “Not only do I want to be a great director of AER, so that we can provide the best support possible to our soldiers, I also want to make sure that I do well so that other enlisted will get a similar opportunity.”
Grinston had a reputation for being an outspoken champion of soldier causes during his Army leadership tenure. AER said that its board of directors unanimously elected Grinston to the post.
“Grinston is no stranger to the organization, having been a member of AER’s board of managers for the previous seven years,” the organization said.
Grinston retired in 2023 after a 36-year career that included numerous combat tours in Afghanistan and Iraq.