Background: MG Kendall W. Penn was Deputy Commanding General (RC), First United States Army. His military career began in 1982 upon enlistment in the Arkansas Army National Guard. He was commissioned a second lieutenant of Infantry upon graduation from the Reserve Officer Training Corps program at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in 1985. Throughout his career, General Penn served in a variety of command and staff positions, including Commander, 1st Battalion, 153d Infantry and Commander, 39th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, both while deployed to Baghdad, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The majority MG Penn’s time as a lieutenant was spent with the 1st Battalion (Airborne) 509th Infantry at the Joint Readiness Training Center, then located at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas. There he served as both an Executive Officer and Platoon Leader in Able Company, as well as the Assistant Operations Officer, Headquarters and Headquarters Company. The 509th would turn out to be the only airborne unit that MG Penn would work with, however it occurred at an early and very developmental time, leaving a lasting impact on the future general.
Awards: Legion of Merit, Bronze Star (with 1 Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster), Meritorious Service Medal (with 3 Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters), Army Commendation Medal (with 3 Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters), Army Achievement Medal, Army Reserve Component Achievement (with 1 Silver Oak Leaf Cluster), National Defense Service Medal (with 1 Bronze Service Star), Iraq Campaign Medal (with 1 Bronze Service Star), Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal (with Silver Hourglass and M Device), Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon (with numeral 2), Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Meritorious Unit Citation (with 1 Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster), Arkansas Federal Service Ribbons, Arkansas Service Ribbon (with 4 Bronze Diamonds), Ranger Tab, Expert Infantryman's Badge, Senior Parachutist Badge, Pathfinder Badge, Air Assault Badge, Combat Infantryman's Badge
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