Col. David L. Sanders III OTC Flag

Deputy Commander/Chief of Staff

Col. David L. Sanders III

Col. Dave Sanders is a graduate of Texas A&M University and was commissioned in May 1992. After completion of the Infantry Officer Basic Course, he was assigned to 2-16 Infantry, 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas. There he served as a platoon leader and company executive officer. In 1995, Col. Sanders’ branch transferred to Armor and attended the Armor Officers Advanced Course.

After attending the Armor Officer Advanced Course, he was assigned to 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood Texas. Col. Sanders served on the Division G-3 staff as an assistant training officer and assistant operations officer. After a year, he was assigned to 2BCT, 1st CAV, as an assistant operations officer. Upon completion of his BCT staff assignment, Col. Sanders assumed command of Delta Company, 1-8 CAV, where he deployed to Bosnia and conducted operations in the suburbs of Brcko.

After leaving Fort Hood in 2000, Col. Sanders was assigned as an AC/RC advisor to Light Cavalry Troop, 45th Enhanced Separate Brigade, in McAlester, Oklahoma. In 2002, he was assigned to the Battle Command Training Program at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where he served as an Opposing Force planner. Upon completion of his BCTP assignment and Command and General Staff College, Col. Sanders was again sent to 1st CAV.

Col. Sanders arrived at Fort Hood in February 2004, and two weeks later he deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom as the 1st BDE, 1st CAV BDE S4. He served 1-1 CAV as the BDE S4 from March 2004 through April 2005. Upon completion of that deployment, Col. Sanders was assigned as the S-3 for 2-5 CAV, subsequently deploying to OIF as the Executive Officer from 2006-2008.

Upon return from OIF 06-08, he was re-assigned to the Combat Training Center Directorate, Fort Leavenworth. There he served as the Chief of Integration until selected to command a Stability Transition Team, TF Shield, 2BCT, 3rd ID. In July 2009, he deployed with his Task Force to Mosul Iraq in support of OIF 09-10. After commanding TF Shield, he was selected to command 1-89 CAV, 10th MTN Division. He commanded 1-89 CAV until May 2012.

After Squadron Command, Col. Sanders attended the U.S. Army War College. Immediately following graduation, he was sent back to Fort Hood and assigned to III Corps. Col. Sanders deployed to Afghanistan and served as the U.S. Forces Afghanistan, J3. He returned to Fort Hood and assumed duties as the ACoS G3, III Corps, until July 2013. He then served as the G3 U.S. Army Operational Test Command (USAOTC) until July 2015 and is currently the USAOTC Deputy Commander/Chief of Staff.

Awards and Honors:

  • Bronze Star (with three Oak Leaf Clusters)
  • Joint Service Medal
  • Meritorious Service Medal (with three Oak Leaf Clusters)
  • Army Commendation Medal (with two Oak Leaf Clusters)
  • Combat Action Badge
  • Expert Infantryman’s Badge
  • Parachutist Badge
  • Ranger Tab


Col. David L. Sanders III assumed the responsibilities as Deputy Commander and Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Operational Test Command in July 2015.

United States Army War College

Texas A&M University
Bachelor of Science

Infantry Officer Basic Course

Armor Officer Advance Course

Command and General Staff College



Official Photo