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Introducing Lt. Col. John McAllister: 344th MI BN commander

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Zachary Heimbuch
  • 17th Training Wing Public Affairs

With memories of his grandfather’s Navy stories and a call to serve, Army Lt. Col. John McAllister started his journey as an Army Junior ROTC cadet.

“I’m thrilled to be in my home state and in San Angelo, said McAllister. “I grew up in San Antonio where I met my wife Heather. She and I are motived to serve our communities, which was my driving factor in why I decided to join the military.”

McAllister now serves as commander of the 344th Military Intelligence Battalion, effective June 21.The 344th MI BN is responsible for advanced individual training for the Army’s newest signals intelligence and linguist soldiers.

“My vision when they finish their training here is that they have an understanding of what it means to be a soldier,” said McAllister. “The drill sergeants, company grade leaders, and Goodfellow instructors set the example of what a leader and good soldier is.”

McAllister plans to develop and foster relationships between members of the joint service units at Goodfellow.

“I want to try to expand upon the services working together,” said McAllister. “I think there’s an appetite for it from the Air Force, and the Marine Corps is very experienced with their tactical ground signals intelligence collection. If we can tap the other branches into what we do at Forward Operating Base Sentinel, it could help shape the joint fighting force.”

McAllister stressed the importance of coming together as a joint service team, by echoing one of the Army mottos:  ‘People First, Winning Matters.’

McAllister plans to work closely with the permanent party staff of his unit and members of the other services to develop and prepare the next generation of soldiers.

“We want to set the foundation for when we leave this base,” said McAllister. “Building up a training environment that sets the next generation up for success and preparing them for joint operations. Two years is a good amount of time to make an impact on our successors.”