When twins Derek and TJ Baird joined the Army in the ’90s, neither of them had any idea what lay ahead. But 26 and 30 years later respectively, one is a colonel and the other a command sergeant major, and it’s safe to say the Army has been a great place for them. The Baird brothers join podcast editor Ron Granieri in the virtual studio to tell the story of two very different yet very similar careers serving the nation. Derek and TJ share how they have relied on each other throughout the years for advice and support both as professional soldiers and as brothers. It’s a great story of their similar leadership philosophies and styles and decades of service that they plan to continue for decades more.
I said this is a great opportunity for me…this is the first time I’m going to pay honor and tribute to my brother for an incredible opportunity for him to go from the enlisted corps to the officer corps. I saluted him right there even though it was my promotion ceremony it was my honor and my privilege to do that for my brother.
COL Derek Baird just completed his 26th year in the Army (4 enlisted, 22 as a FA officer). He has deployed on 3 combat tours (2 x Iraq and 1 x AFG) and one deployment to Europe for Operation Atlantic Resolve. Upon graduation from the U.S. Army War College Resident Course he will head to Fort Sill to assume the Assistant Commandant position followed by Fort Sill Garrison Command 2024-2026.
Command Sergeant Major TJ Baird currently serves as the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s Command Senior Enlisted Leader. He is married to CSM JoAnn Naumann and they have a daughter, Veronika (17). During his 30 years in the Army, he has numerous global deployments and conducted various National Command Authority-directed missions.
Ron Granieri is Professor of History at the U.S. Army War College and the Editor of A BETTER PEACE.
The views expressed in this presentation are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Army War College, U.S. Army, or Department of Defense.
Photo Description: Lt. Col. Derek Baird, left, 3-16 Field Artillery Regiment, gestures during an interview while his brother Command Sgt. Maj. Thomas Baird, right, 504th MI BDE former CSM, listens, March 8, 2019, Fort Hood, Texas. Both are identical twins serving on the same post.
Photo Credit: U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Melissa N. Lessard