San Antonio Soldier Promoted to Colonel

13th COSCOM Public Affairs Office
April 9, 2004

Balad, Iraq — A San Antonio resident and career Army Reserve officer was promoted to the rank of Col. at Logistics Support Area Anaconda here April 7.

Col. Nicholas Zoeller, 56, a native of Louisville, is the assistant chief of staff for civil military operations, for the 13th Corps Support Command here.

This is Zoeller's third tour in Iraq since 1991, he has been deployed on this current rotation since January.

Zoeller began his career as a Pvt. In 1971. He was commissioned in 1979 after graduating from Officer Candidate School.

Although he pursued a civilian career in law enforcement and retired as Little Rock's Chief of Police after 30-years service, Zoeller's reserve commitments have taken him to many of our recent major operations.

Zoeller served during Operation Desert Shield/Storm, Operation Provide Comfort (relief of the Kurdish population in Northern Iraq) and in Sarajevo with the United Nations.

Currently, he is on leave from his job as an assistant professor of military science at Texas A&M, in Kingsville, where he teaches part of the next generation of Army officers.

"The job of a good officer and soldier is to lead," said Zoeller. "Good leaders are good facilitators that make things happen for other people." Every leader should ask, "how can I help you accomplish your mission," he added.

Zoeller is most proud of his work with resettling the Kurdish people who had been oppressed and brutalized, by Sadaam Hussein, after the first Gulf War. He also met his wife, an Army doctor during that tour.

Asked to name his greatest accomplishment in life, Zoeller doesn't hesitate to say, raising his family of three, ages 3, 4 and 9. "At the end of the day, that's what's important," he said.

Col. James Chambers, 13th COSCOM's commanding general, presided over the short ceremony and praised Zoeller's current work coordinating numerous reconstruction and humanitarian projects in the Balad area.

"Let's get back to work," said Zoeller when given the chance to make remarks in front of his assembled friends, subordinates and other fellow soldiers.

The 13th COSCOM is a Fort Hood, Texas based, multi-component (active, reserve and national guard) unit responsible for managing logistical operations in Iraq.

For more information contact the 13th Corps Support Command Public Affairs Office at


Col James Chambers and Col Nicholas Zoeller
Col. James Chambers (left), Commanding General, 13th Corps Support Command, Ft. Hood, Texas in the act of promoting Louisville native and San Antonio resident Nicholas Zoeller to Col. April 9, in near Balad, Iraq. Photo by Maj. Debra Summerlin, US Army.