Command Sergeant Major Michael E. Behnkendorf is a native of Bradgate, Iowa. He entered the United States Army on 27 January 1996, and attended One Station Unit Training at Fort Leonard Wood, MO where he was trained as a Combat Engineer.
His positions and duty assignments include: Combat Engineer, C Co, 577th Engineer Battalion, Fort Leonard Wood, MO; Team Leader, B Co, 54th Engineer Battalion, 130th Engineer Brigade, Bamberg, Germany; Squad Leader, A Co, 41st Engineer Battalion, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) Fort Drum, NY; Platoon Sergeant, A Co, 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, NY; Senior Drill Sergeant, A Co, 1st Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment, 4th Training Brigade, Fort Jackson, SC; 2006 TRADOC Drill Sergeant of the Year, HQ TRADOC, Fort Monroe, VA; Platoon Sergeant, 630th Engineer Co (Sapper), 7th Engineer Battalion, 20th Engineer Brigade, Fort Drum, NY; Battalion Operations Sergeant, HHC, 7th Engineer Battalion; Senior Engineer NCO, DIVENG, G3, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, NY; First Sergeant, 693rd Engineer Co (Sapper)(Wheeled), 7th Engineer Battalion, Fort Drum, NY; First Sergeant, HHC, 7th Engineer Battalion; Battalion Operations Sergeant, HHC, 7th Engineer Battalion; Command Sergeant Major, 41st Engineer Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), and Command Sergeant Major, Area Support Group-Kuwait, United States Army Central Command.
His deployments include Operation Enduring Freedom (03-04, 10-11, and 12-13), and Operation Iraqi Freedom 09-10.
CSM Behnkendorf has completed all required levels of the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development System through the United States Army Sergeants Major Academy, Class 66; Ranger Course; Sapper Leader Course; Airborne Course; Air Assault Course; Rappel Master Course; and Drill Sergeant School. He also earned an Associate’s of Arts Degree in General Studies from Columbia Southern University and a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Liberal Arts from Excelsior College.
His awards and decorations include: Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal (3 OLC), Meritorious Service Medal (4 OLC), Army Commendation Medal (3 OLC), Army Achievement Medal (4 OLC), the Good Conduct Medal (7th Award), National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal (2 Campaign Stars), Iraq Campaign Medal (1 Campaign Star), Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon (Numeral 5), Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon (Numeral 6), and the NATO Medal. He has also been awarded the Ranger Tab, the Sapper Tab, the Basic Airborne Badge, the Air Assault Badge, the Drill Sergeant Identification Badge, Wheeled Drivers Badge and the German Armed Forces Efficiency Badge (Silver). CSM Behnkendorf was a member of the 2009 LTG Robert B. Flowers Best Sapper Competition 1st Place team and is a recipient of the Bronze Order of the deFluery Medal.
CSM Behnkendorf is married to the former Melissa Canfield and they have two children.