JOHNSTON, Iowa – The adjutant general of the Iowa National Guard has announced his plans for retirement.
Maj. Gen. Benjamin J. Corell intends to step down effective March 1 after serving three years as the Iowa National Guard’s commander. He was selected for the position by Gov. Kim Reynolds in August 2019.
Corell was instrumental in leading the Iowa National Guard as Soldiers and Airmen were called on to support domestic operations, including the COVID-19 pandemic, civil unrest, and a historic derecho storm. He oversaw multiple overseas deployments to the Middle East and Europe and strengthened the organization’s state partnership with Kosovo.
“Through unrest, natural disaster recoveries, and a pandemic, General Corell has been a guiding light, not only for me, but for every Iowan. When I appointed General Corell, I said we couldn’t know what the future would hold. None of us could have predicted the trials and tribulations we would face in that time,” said Governor Kim Reynolds. “I am thankful for General Corell’s strength and guidance during those trying times. And I will be forever grateful for his dedication to our state.”
Corell’s military career includes six overseas deployments and command at every level of the Iowa National Guard over the course of 37 years. Corell most recently served as the division commander of the 34th Infantry Division “Red Bulls” during a deployment to Kuwait in support of Operation Spartan Shield.
Corell was born in Manchester, Iowa, and raised in Strawberry Point, Iowa. He enlisted in the Iowa Army National Guard in January 1986 and received his officer’s commission from the Iowa Military Academy’s Officer Candidate School in March 1989.