LATHAM, NY (05/17/2022) New York Army National Guard Command Sgt. Major Thomas Ciampolillo, a former Schenectady police detective, retired after 42 years of military service during a May 15 ceremony at the Camp Smith Training Site near Peekskill.
Ciampolillo enlisted in the New York Army National Guard in 1980, joined the Navy in 1982 and then rejoined the New York National Guard in 1986.
He is a veteran of the Iraq War and also served in Ukraine in 2017, helping train members of the Ukrainian Army.
Prior to retiring, Ciampolillo served as the top enlisted leader for the 4,400-member 53rd Troop Command, which has Soldiers located at units across New York.
"Overall, with the 53rd Troop Command, it's been an outstanding assignment," Ciampolillo said. "It was the highlight of my career."
His lifetime of service was recognized with the award of the Legion of Merit.
He was born in Poestenkill, although he and his wife now live in Davenport, Florida and have one adult daughter.
Ciampolillo served in a number of New York Army National Guard units ranging from the Mortar Platoon of the 1st Battalion, 210th Armor to the 42nd Infantry Division's Police Training Team in Tikrit, Iraq, where he served as the non-commissioned officer in charge.
Ciampolillo has served as a platoon sergeant, company first sergeant, operations sergeant major, command sergeant major of the 102nd Military Police Battalion, command sergeant major of the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, command sergeant major of the Joint Multinational Training Group-Ukraine, and command sergeant major of the 106th Regional Training Institute before taking on his final assignment with the 53rd Troop Command.
Following the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, he served for six months on a federal airport security mission as a company first sergeant.
While serving in Iraq he also served as an operations sergeant major for a Military Training Team supporting the 4th Iraqi Army Division.
While serving in the Navy he deployed to the Mediterranean and Indian Oceans on board the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Saratoga.
He is a 2007 graduate of the Sergeants Major Academy in 2007. Ciampolillo, also graduated from the US Army War College's Nominative Leader Course in 2019.
Ciampolillo' s awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, Navy Unit Commendation, Naval Sea Service Deployment, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the Combat Action Badge.
When asked what he's most looking forward to when he retires, Ciampolillo said it was "relaxing and playing golf, and spending time with my wife and my dog."