Distinguished Member of the Corps



Command Sergeant Major James E. Van Patten


Command Sergeant Major James E. Van Patten was born 11 September 1957 in Los Angeles, California. He retired in 2004 with over 30 years of service to the U.S. Army and Chemical Corps in varying leadership and staff assignments.


In retirement, Command Sergeant Major Van Patten continues to serve his country as a Department of the Army civilian, with duty as the Acting Chief Planning Integration Division/Plans, Analysis & Integration Office, in Grafenwohr, Germany.


Command Sergeant Major Van Patten instituted the Rite of Passage ceremony where new Chemical Soldiers are inducted to the Corps, a program still in use today. He also prepared for and moved the Chemical School from Fort McClellan to Fort Leonard Wood. He developed and published the Chemical Soldier Professional Development Guide. During his extensive career, he coached, mentored and trained thousands of Chemical junior enlisted, NCOs and Officers, and continues these activities today as a DA civilian.