Colonel Martin Downie assumed duty as the 19th Commandant of the Defense Information School on June 4, 2015. As Commandant, he leads a team of 400 military, civilian and contractor professionals in training approximately 2,200 students a year in various public affairs and visual information disciplines.
Colonel Downie was born on September 25, 1967, in Springfield, Massachusetts. He attended Syracuse University and graduated in May 1989 as a Second Lieutenant of Air Defense.
From 1990 to 1994, he served in 4th Battalion, 3d Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 3d Infantry Division, Germany. Following the Officer’s Advanced Course, he was reassigned to 3d Battalion, 62nd Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, New York where he completed his battery command.
After completing the Public Affairs Officer’s Course in 1998 he served until 2002 as the V Corps Public Affairs Operations Chief and Deputy Public Affairs Officer deploying to Kosovo in 1999. Upon completion of advanced civil schooling and officer intermediate level education in 2004, he deployed to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, as the Public Affairs Operations Chief for the Coalition Forces Land Component Command supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom until 2005.
From 2005-2009, he worked for the Army’s Chief of Public Affairs serving as an Executive Officer as well as heading plans and media operations teams. He then deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom as the Public Affairs Officer for the Deputy Commanding General for Advising and Training until 2010. He then returned to the Army’s Chief of Public Affairs where he served as a Deputy Division Chief until 2011. Colonel Downie graduated from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces (now called the Eisenhower School) in 2012.
He served as the Chief of Public Affairs, Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe, from July 2012 to May 2015