Colonel Mark Alessia assumed command of the 33rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team in September 2017. He joined the Illinois Army National Guard in 1992 as an enlisted Infantry Soldier. In 1996 he earned a commission as a second lieutenant Infantry Officer through the Reserve Officer Training Corps at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education.
Colonel Alessia taught middle school math and history and served as a traditional Guardsman until 2003 when he entered the Active Guard and Reserve Program.
Colonel Alessia has held a variety of command and staff assignments to include; Rifle Platoon Leader, Mortar Platoon Leader, Company Executive Officer, Company Commander, Battalion Operations Officer (S-3), Recruiting and Retention Battalion Commander, Squadron Commander, Deputy Director of Plans, Operations and Training (G-3), and State Military Personnel Officer (G-1).
Colonel Alessia has deployed overseas to Kuwait in support of Operation Desert Spring (2000-2001), to Germany in support of Operations Santa Fe (January to August 2002), and to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (February to December 2009).
Colonel Alessia earned a Master of Science degree in Adult and Continuing Education from Kansas State University in 2007 and a Master of Arts in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College in 2016. Colonel Alessia is a qualified Infantry Officer, Chemical Officer, and Adjutant General Corps Officer and has successfully completed assignments in each of these three branches.
Colonel Alessia’s military education includes Infantry Officer Basic Course, Infantry Officer Captain Career Course, Chemical Officer Advanced Course, Human Resource Officer Qualification Course, Combined Arms and Services Staff School, Command and General Staff Officer Course, and Senior Service College.
Colonel Alessia has numerous awards and decorations including the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Forces Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge and basic parachutist wings.
Colonel Alessia resides in Sherman, Illinois, with his wife Jennifer and their three children.
As of September 2017
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