Major General Sharon Nesmith appointed as the Army’s next Deputy Chief of the General Staff

In January 2021, Major General Nesmith became the first female officer to command at two-star level in the British Army when she was appointed General Officer Commanding (GOC) Army Recruiting and Initial Training Command.

As GOC, Major General Nesmith oversaw the recruitment and training of over 35,000 Regular and Reserve officers and soldiers across 280 Army courses each year and was responsible for 5350 people working in the UK and abroad as part of the organisation.

In August, she will start her new role as Deputy Chief of the General Staff, becoming the first female British Army officer to attain the rank of Lieutenant General and occupy this prestigious appointment in the Army’s Headquarters.

General Sir Mark Carleton-Smith KCB CBE ADC Gen, Chief of the General Staff, confirmed that Her Majesty The Queen had approved the appointment on 4 April 2022.

I feel deeply honoured to be appointed as the Deputy Chief of the General Staff." Major General Sharon Nesmith

General Sir Mark Carleton-Smith said: “I am delighted that Sharon Nesmith will be the next Deputy Chief of the General Staff on promotion to Lieutenant General this summer. She is the right person at the right time to drive the Army’s transformation and she brings a wealth of experience, energy and fresh ideas."

Major General Sharon Nesmith said “I feel deeply honoured to be appointed as the Deputy Chief of the General Staff at such a pivotal time for the British Army - I look forward to playing my part in leading our Future Soldier transformation to become a more lethal, agile, digitised and expeditionary force.”

Major General Sharon Nesmith was commissioned into the Royal Corps of Signals in 1992 and spent much of her formative Army career in Germany, during which time she also completed 3 tours in the Balkans.

She commanded 1st Mechanized Brigade Headquarters and Signal Squadron (215) during their deployment on Op TELIC 10 in Iraq and later commanded 22nd Signal Regiment as the Regiment re-roled to provide command support to Headquarters Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC).

Following completion of the Advanced Command and Staff Course in 2003, Major General Nesmith’s next appointment was within the Directorate of Capability, Resources and Scrutiny in the Ministry of Defence, where she provided affordability advice to senior officers and Ministers at key investment decisions for equipment programmes.

She subsequently served as SO1 Capability in Army Resources and Plans. On promotion to Colonel she served as the Assistant Director Capability Plans, leading on the delegation of capability development to the Army Headquarters in support of Director General Capability, and attended the Higher Command and Staff Course in 2014.

Major General Nesmith commanded the 1st (United Kingdom) Signal Brigade from 2014 to 2016, supporting Headquarters ARRC and the UK Joint Task Force Headquarters. She was then Head of Manning (Army), before promoting to Major General and serving as Director Personnel from 2019 to 2021. Additionally, she is the Master of Signals and a REME Colonel Commandant as well as Vice President of Army Women’s Rugby and Football.