United States Marine Corps Forces Central Command
MARCENT insignia.
Country United States
TypeMarine Combined arms
RoleAmphibious and expeditionary warfare
Part ofUnited States Central Command
Garrison/HQMacDill AFB
CommanderMajor General Paul J. Rock Jr.
Sergeant MajorSergeant Major Steven L. Lunsford

The United States Marine Corps Forces Central Command is headquartered at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida. The Commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Central Command (COMUSMARCENT), is designated as the Marine Corps service component commander for Commander, U.S. Central Command (COMUSCENTCOM). MARCENT is responsible for all Marine Corps Forces in the CENTCOM Area of Responsibility (AOR), except for those assigned to the U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), and Special Operations Command, Central Command (SOCCENT).

The AOR, which includes 20 countries and over 500 million people, features mountain ranges with elevations of more than 24,000 feet and desert areas below sea level and temperatures ranging from below freezing to 130 °F (54 °C). The Arabian Sea, Red Sea, Persian Gulf, and part of the Indian Ocean are included in this region. Three of the world's major religions, Christianity, Judaism and Islam have their roots here. The region contains the major maritime trade routes which link the Middle East, Europe, Asia and the Western Hemisphere. Petroleum products which fuel the economies of European and Asian allies pass through three maritime choke points in the region: the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal and the Bab El Mandab.

COMUSMARCENT provides Marine Expeditionary Forces capable of conducting a wide range of operations, offering the command a responsive and unique set of capabilities. Marines embarked aboard U.S. Navy amphibious ships deploy regularly to the region, organized as Marine Air Ground Task Forces (MAGTF). These forces provide a potent mix of capabilities that can project combat power rapidly to any location in the region. While afloat in the CENTCOM AOR, they serve as a visible deterrent force, train continuously, and participate in a wide range of engagement activities.

In addition to providing MAGTFs deployed aboard U.S. Navy ships, MARCENT has the proven capability to deploy MAGTFs to the CENTCOM AOR by air and marry-up with prepositioned equipment. This provides COMUSCENTCOM with a rapid response capability across the range of military operations. Though there have been Marines stationed at CENTCOM Headquarters since September 1982, MARCENT, as a service component command, did not come into existence until 1990, when Marine Corps forces were preparing for Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM in Southwest Asia. Beginning in 2001, under the command of Commander, Marine Corps Forces Pacific, MARCENT participated in multiple operations, including Operation ENDURING FREEDOM in Afghanistan and Pakistan, operations in the Central Asian States as well as the Horn of Africa, and Operation IRAQI FREEDOM.

On 3 August 2005, Headquarters Marine Corps designated MARCENT as a force headquarters, under the command of Commanding General, I Marine Expeditionary Force.

List of commanders

This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (April 2021)
No. Commander Term Ref
Portrait Name Took office Left office Term length
Lieutenant General
Wallace C. Gregson
(born 1946)
????3 August 2005????-
Lieutenant General
John F. Sattler
(born 1949)
3 August 200514 August 20061 year, 11 days[1]
Lieutenant General
James Mattis
(born 1950)
14 August 20065 November 20071 year, 83 days[2]
Lieutenant General
Samuel T. Helland
(born 1947/1948)
5 November 200716 October 20092 years, 348 days[3]
Lieutenant General
Joseph Dunford
(born 1953)
16 October 200919 October 20101 year, 3 days[3]
Lieutenant General
Thomas D. Waldhauser
(born 1955)
19 October 201012 September 20121 year, 329 days[4]
Lieutenant General
Robert Neller[5]
(born 1953)
12 September 201218 June 20141 year, 279 days[6]
Lieutenant General
Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr.
(born 1956/1957)
18 June 201427 October 20151 year, 131 days[7]
Lieutenant General
William D. Beydler
27 October 201511 July 20182 years, 257 days[8]
Lieutenant General
Carl E. Mundy III
(born 1960)
11 July 2018October 2021~3 years, 82 days[9]
Major General
Paul J. Rock
October 2021Incumbent~173 days[10]


  1. ^ Sgt. Luis R. Agostini (10 August 2005). "Lt. Gen. Sattler assumes MARCENT command". U.S. Marine Corps Camp Pendleton. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  2. ^ Walker, Mark (15 August 2006). "Mattis assumes command of I Marine Expeditionary Force". The San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  3. ^ a b Cpl. Bobbie Curtis (22 October 2009). "Marine general caps a 41-year career at Camp Lejeune". Dvidshub.net. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  4. ^ Cpl. Monty Burton (19 October 2010). "Dunford passes I MEF to Waldhauser". Dvidshub.net. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  5. ^ The combined command post of I Marine Expeditionary Force and Marine Forces Central Command was split on the same day Neller took command of MARCENT. LtGen John A. Toolan succeeded Waldhauser as I MEF commanding general.
  6. ^ Cpl. Jennifer Pirante (12 September 2012). "I MEF, MARCENT WELCOME NEW LEADERS". I MEF. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  7. ^ Sgt. Frederick J. Coleman (18 June 2014). "New MARCENT commander promoted, welcomed". Dvidshub.net. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  8. ^ Master Sgt. William Price (28 October 2015). "MARCENT welcomes new commander". U.S. Central Command. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  9. ^ Master Sgt. Stephen Traynham (11 July 2018). "MARCENT welcomes new commander". Dvidshub.net. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  10. ^ "Major General Paul J. Rock Jr". Retrieved 28 October 2021.