"Major General McBride has served our state and the country with great skill and dedication, and I want to thank him for his tremendous leadership," said Raimondo. "I will not forget the expertise and advice he provided me during this challenging winter season to keep Rhode Islanders safe. I wish him and his family the very best as they begin this next chapter."
"It has been my distinct honor and pleasure to have served alongside the great men and women of the Rhode Island National Guard and to have been appointed as their Commanding General," said McBride. "I will always be grateful for the opportunity, and to those who have sacrificed greatly throughout my thirty-five years of service. My wife Colleen and I will cherish our time in service to this great state, and will forever be thankful to those who have shared in our success for their devotion to duty."
Major General McBride was appointed as the Adjutant General by former Governor Lincoln D. Chafee, and assumed command of the 3,300 member Rhode Island National Guard on July 1, 2011.
Major General McBride led the Rhode Island National Guard during a period of continuous deployments in support of the Global War on Terror. More than 2,000 individual deployments took place during McBride's tenure, which was highlighted by the cessation of ground combat operations in both Iraq and Afghanistan. McBride is also credited with leading the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency and coordinating numerous federal, state, and local agencies during multiple state emergencies.
Major General McBride was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in 1980 in the Rhode Island National Guard. He spent the majority of his long and distinguished career as an Army Aviator until assuming command in January 2002 of the 56th Troop Command (Airborne), East Greenwich, Rhode Island. After being promoted to Brigadier General in 2003, McBride assumed command of the 43d Military Police Brigade, Warwick RI, leading the brigade during their deployment to Iraq in 2005. Under his command, the Rhode Island Guard took the lead role in detention operations in Iraq and the eventual closing of the infamous Abu Ghraib detention center. In 2009, he was appointed as the Deputy Commanding General, Army National Guard, Army Materiel Command, Fort Belvoir, Virginia, before returning to his roots in Rhode Island as the Adjutant General.
"I have created a search committee, led by Lieutenant General Reginald Centracchio (Ret), to help identify our next Commanding General," Raimondo said. "I am thankful to Major General Thomas Haynes (Ret), Admiral James Stavridis (Ret), Lieutenant Colonel Karen Pinch (Ret), Hospital Corpsman Chief Jonathan Rascoe (Ret), and Lieutenant Commander Camille Vella-Wilkinson (Ret) for bringing their experience to this process."
Lieutenant General Reginald Centracchio, (Ret)
General Centracchio was first appointed the Adjutant General and Commanding General of the Rhode Island National Guard in 1995. He also served as the Director of the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency and as the Rhode Island Homeland Security Advisor, becoming the first Adjutant General to hold these three positions simultaneously. General Centracchio served the State with 48 years of exemplary leadership in the Rhode Island National Guard.
Major General Thomas Haynes, (Ret)
Major General Thomas Haynes served as the Assistant Adjutant General for Air, Rhode
Island Air National Guard, Wing Commander and Operations Group Commander of the 143rd Airlift Wing and, most recently, Air National Guard assistant to the Commander, Air Mobility Command. He has served as a deployed Mission Commander for Desert Storm and the Weapons System Council Chair for the Guard C-130 community. General Haynes has been recognized for his four decades of outstanding service to the State of Rhode Island.
Admiral James Stavridis, USN (Ret)
Admiral Stavridis, a retired 4- star Admiral in the US Navy, currently serves as Dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts and Chair of the Board of the US Naval Institute. Admiral Stavridis spent over thirty years in the Navy, and four years as the 16th Supreme Allied Commander at NATO, where he oversaw operations in Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, the Balkans, and piracy off the coast of Africa. He was the longest serving Combatant Commander in recent US history.
Richmond Town Administrator Karen Pinch, Lieutenant Colonel, RISP (Ret)
Lieutenant Colonel Pinch will begin her tenure as Richmond Town Administrator on April 13th. A twenty-three year veteran of the Rhode Island State Police, Lieutenant Colonel Pinch served as the Commanding Officer of the Department of Public Safety. She is the highest ranking woman in the history of the Rhode Island State Police.
Assistant Administrator at the RI Veterans Memorial Cemetery, Hospital Corpsman Chief Jonathan Rascoe, USN (Ret)
Hospital Corpsman Chief Rascoe is the Assistant Adminstrator of the Rhode Island Veterans Memorial Cemetery. His naval career includes assignments on the USS Providence (SSN-719) and the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71), which deployed twice to combat areas in the Mediterranean Sea and Persian Gulf.
Warwick City Council member Camille Vella-Wilkinson, Lieutenant Commander, USN (Ret)
Lieutenant Commander Vella-Wilkinson is a decorated US Navy veteran and accomplished civil rights advocate. She founded Higher & Hire, where she works as a Career Coach and Diversity Trainer. Lieutenant Commander Vella-Wilkinson serves as Warwick City Council member and one of seven State Commissioners for the Rhode Island Commission for Human Rights.