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JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska - U.S. Army Alaska's commanding general earned his second star in a ceremony here March 18.

Admiral Eric T. Olson, commander of U. S. Special Operations Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., conducted the ceremony.

Maj. Gen. Raymond P. Palumbo, who was a brigadier general when he assumed command of U.S. Army Alaska in July 2010, credited his family, fellow service members and mentors for his success.

"A smart man once said we're probably all just the average of the five people we hang around with the most, and I'd like to think that's true," Palumbo said. "There are so many people that have influenced me, from the time I was a little guy, until today. I'm the average of all of that."

The general is a 1981 graduate of the U. S. Military Academy at West Point with a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering. He has a Master of Science degree in administration from Central Michigan University, a Master of Strategic Studies degree from the U. S. Army War College and is a graduate of the British High Command and Staff College.

He has commanded at the company, battalion, and brigade levels and served in numerous aviation and special operations assignments. Prior to his arrival in Alaska he served at Fort Bragg, N. C. as the assistant commanding general of the Joint Special Operations Command and then as the deputy commanding general of U. S. Army Special Operations Command.