Ike McLeese, president and CEO of the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce has been reappointed to a two-year term as civilian aide to the Secretary of the Army.
It will be McLeese’s fourth term serving as a liaison between the Army and South Carolina. His duties will include advising Secretary of the Army John McHugh and building relationships between the service and the state.
The post is particularly significant because of the presence of Fort Jackson in Columbia, the Army’s largest basic training facility, graduating about 50,000 new soldiers each year, and Third Army in Sumter, the planning and logistic arm of the Army in the Middle East and Southwest Asia.
McLeese also has guided local efforts to protect Fort Jackson and McEntire Joint National Guard Base from base closures and realignments.
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“It’s an honor to serve and I am delighted to have an opportunity to continue,” he said. “I really enjoy working soldiers and their families.”
McLeese said one of the most significant aspects of his job is being with the families of fallen soldiers and following up with as they deal with their losses.
“While it has been difficult, it has been the most meaningful things I have done,” he said.