AUGUSTA — Gov. Paul LePage has nominated the state’s next top military leader.

The governor today announced that Col. James Campbell is his pick to become Maine’s next adjutant general. Campbell joined the Maine Army National Guard in 1995 after serving nine years of active duty.

Campbell has held several positions, including executive officer of the University of Maine Army Reserve Officer Training Corps and commander of the 11th Civil Support Team in Waterville.

He is currently serving as the deputy division chief of the Operations Plans Division at United States Central Command in Tampa, Fla.

Cambell is a graduate of Colby College and he holds a MA and PhD in history from the University of Maine.

“Colonel Campbell has distinguished himself as a soldier and a scholar, in addition to his recent service in Afghanistan,” LePage said in a statement. “I am proud to nominate him as adjutant general. He is the right man to lead our soldiers and airmen in the years to come.”

The position is the supreme military officer of the state. The adjutant general also serves as the commissioner of the Defense, Veterans and Emergency Management.

Campbell would replace Major General John W. Libby, who announced in March that he was retiring. 

“I’m pleased and honored to have been selected by the governor for this position,” Campbell said in a statement. “I look forward to returning to Maine to lead our superb soldiers and airmen of the Maine National Guard through this important period of both war and transition.”

Campbell could be sworn in at some point over the next few weeks. His nomination is subject to approval by the Legislature’s Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee.

Campbell was chosen by a committee comprising retired military officers, Labor Commissioner Robert Winglass, Public Safety Commissioner John Morris, Kennebec County Sheriff Randall Liberty and others.