A US Army officer of Nigerian descent, Amanda Azubeike, was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General of the force in November.
Born in London, UK to Nigerian parents, Azubeike joined the US Army in 1994 and became a pilot after passing the Army Aviation Officers Course.
She currently serves as Deputy Commander at the US Army Cadet Headquarters and previously served as Chief of Staff/Senior Military Advisor at the Office of the Secretary of Defense.
She shared the story of her journey to become a Brigadier General in the US Army, revealing how her family and faith in God played vital roles in her career.
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She recalled how her parents passed away six years ago, and said it was a proud day for them. Amanda’s father and mother came from Nigeria and Zimbabwe, respectively.
She made the statement after being decorated with her latest rank on November 3, 2022. The statement was posted on Twitter on the same day.
“My parents passed away in the last six years. This could have been a proud day for them. But I want to thank my family members who were able to come and travel to be here with me today. Thank you all for coming and sharing this day with me.
“I’ve said before that you can learn a lot about someone by their journey. So today I’m going to share a little bit about my journey and how I got here because I really didn’t think I’d be here today.
“I believe that my journey is a true testimony to my family, my faith in God and also to this great country we live in. I think this is what my mother dreamed of when she left and decided to immigrate to Israel years ago.
“I joined the US Army even before I became a citizen, and I always knew that this country was great, worth fighting for. I’m very proud of my heritage, my ethnic roots, we’re proud to be Americans,” she said after being decorated.
The education of Amanda Azubeika
She attended Jacksonville High School until 1988, when she was accepted to the University of Central Arkansas, where she earned a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Mass Communication/Media Studies from 1989 to 1993.
Between 1994 and 1995, she attended the Army Aviation Officers Course, Military Intelligence Captains Career Course in 1999 before enrolling in the Fixed Wing Multi-Engine Training Course in 2000.
In 2005, she attended the Defense Information School in a public affairs/public relations/media relations course to improve her public relations skills. She didn’t stop there, however, as she went on to the US Army Command and General Staff College in 2008 for Intermediate Level Education (ILE).
From 2013 to 2014, she enrolled in a Master of Arts (MA) program in National Security Studies and Strategic Studies at the United States Army War College before adding a Master of Professional Studies in Public Relations/Corporate Communications at Georgetown University in 2012.
Amanda Azubeika’s career
Azubeika described herself as a senior military leader and public affairs professional with more than 15 years of media experience, and 30 years of military leadership.
She has an extensive background in all aspects of communications, has led numerous teams in successful communications efforts, demonstrated excellence in program and strategy development, media relations management, crisis communications, digital campaigns, improving internal and external stakeholder relations, and global affairs.
Azubeika joined the US Army and served as an Army pilot, starting her aviation career in the UH-1H Huey helicopter and transitioning to the RC-12D/H (Fixed Wing) Rail. Military aviation took her from Sinai to Korea.
She performed a variety of missions in both flight frames, from lift and transport in support of State Department observer controllers in the UH-1H, to real-world surveillance and observation missions flying the RC-12 in South Korea.
In addition, her experience included leading aircraft mechanics and pilots, training, planning, mission verification/qualification, logistics and maintenance operations in support of assigned units.
In July 2005, she was named the Third Army/US Army Key Public Affairs Officer at Camp Arifajan, Kuwait, where she coordinated day-to-day operations, including the production of public affairs directives, appendices, media releases, and media awareness training for leaders and potential interviewees.
She also provided analysis of print output and Arab media, maintained coordination with the US Embassy PAO and representatives throughout Central Command’s area of operations, and built and maintained active relationships with local and regional media.
After her stellar performance, she was promoted to Chief of Public Affairs Central Operations for Third Army/US Army in August 2006 at Fort McPherson, Georgia/Camp Ariban, Kuwait, a position she held for six years and one month.
While there, she coordinated the daily operations, including future planning for emergency operations, communication guidance and outreach to the community; Produced numerous products including talking points, press releases, speeches, media consulting, brochures and soldier media cards.
She also managed content on the unit’s website and Facebook page and prepared senior leaders and subject matter experts for media engagements, including interviews and speeches to the media.
Azubeika also continuously coordinated with the US embassies (Egypt, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Tajikistan, Jordan), the Central Command and the Department of the Army to synchronize messages while simultaneously building and maintaining positive relationships with local and regional communication tools.
In January 2013, she was appointed Acting Director, Community Relations Division, Office of the Chief of Public Affairs, US Army, Washington DC Metro Area.
As part of her duties, she led the Community Relations Division in military-wide outreach programs designed to strengthen relations and inform lawyers, the media, the legislature and other stakeholders throughout the country.
She also developed communications plans for high-visibility events and produced numerous briefings for the Chief of Staff, the Director of the Army Staff, the Chief of the Army Staff, and the Secretary of the Army, which focused on outreach and education to diverse audiences through sports outreach, media engagement, senior leadership speaking events, the AUSA Annual Meeting, Day The birth of the military, veterans conferences, commemorations, discussion panels and many other platforms.
Azubeika was responsible for managing the priorities of OCPA’s regional offices in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, in addition to the COMREL team at the Pentagon.
Amanda was named Director, Public Affairs for US Forces in Afghanistan in November 2014, a position she held until November 2015. While in that position, she deployed with the US Army’s peak force of 30,000 US service members, including soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines.
She was directly responsible to the Deputy Commanding General – supporting all public affairs activities to inform key audiences in the United States, Afghanistan and the region in order to achieve strategic and operational objectives including command information, communications, ongoing operations and strategic communications – with a special emphasis on social media.
She also provided public affairs consulting and strategic communications direction and support to senior leadership on the USFOR-A team.
She was promoted to director of public affairs, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Georgia until August 2016, where she was the chief spokeswoman for the 23,000-strong Army division; Led a team responsible for programs that drive community outreach, media relations and internal communications.
Apart from these, she provided training and public affairs advice to the commanding and senior commanders, built and expanded relationships with community leaders, media and corporate and private organizations through various community opportunities, engaged the external and internal audiences of the military through traditional and organizations. social media through multiple platforms and forums and was directly responsible for the development, mentoring and professional growth of two officers and seven soldiers on her staff in addition to the supervision, mentoring and professional development of approximately 20 PA professionals at the divisional level.
From September 2016 to January 2018, she was Director of Public Affairs, Joint Force Headquarters-National Capital Region/Military District of Washington, DC, and in January 2018, she was Chief of Public Affairs, United States Southern Command, Miami/Fort Lauderdale Area, the position where she served until April 20213.
After performing creditably, she was appointed Chief of Staff/Senior Military Advisor to the Chief Deputy of ATSD(PA), Office of the Secretary of Defense from June 2021 – June 2022 in Washington, DC, United States.
Azubeika became the Deputy Commanding General of the US Army in July 2022, the position she still holds today.