With Gen. James McConville likely heading to his next role as the Army’s top officer, there were a handful of senior-ranking generals who could have filled his shoes.

The top choice is Lt. Gen. Joseph Martin, currently the director of the Army staff, according to a nomination from the president sent to the Senate Armed Services Committee on Monday.

He would pin on a fourth star later this year, as Joint Chiefs chairman nominee Gen. Mark Milley vacates the Army chief of staff role, and, in all likelihood, McConville moves into that job.

Martin, 56, is a career armor officer who graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1986. He most recently commanded the 1st Infantry Division at Fort Riley, Kansas, a job he was thrust into after the previous division commander was relieved amid a misconduct investigation.

That job came with a fifth deployment to Iraq, he told Army Times in 2016.

“It comes with the territory. It’s part of what we do,” he said. “I think there’s a natural human tendency that when you leave, you say, let’s hope we set the conditions so that this is the last time. Every time we come here we want to get it right and that’s my endeavor this time as well. I think we’re well on our way to do it.”

Martin and his troops went on to lead the coalition of Iraqi forces who liberated Mosul from the Islamic State as the commander of Operation Inherent Resolve’s Combined Joint Forces Land Component Command.

A confirmation hearing has not yet been scheduled, according to the Senate calendar.

Meghann Myers is the Pentagon bureau chief at Military Times. She covers operations, policy, personnel, leadership and other issues affecting service members. Follow on Twitter @Meghann_MT

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