Governor Spencer Cox appointed Brig. Gen. Daniel Boyack, who was serving as commander of the Utah Air National Guard, served as the interim adjutant general of the Utah National Guard
Governor Spencer Cox has placed Maj. Gen. Michael Turley, commander of the Utah National Guard, on paid administrative leave following an investigation by the US Army Inspector General.
“Utah National Guard Adjutant Maj. Gen. Michael J. Turley was examined by the Department of the Army Inspector General,” Cox said in a statement. “We have not received a copy of her report, but according to information provided by DAIG, Major General Turley has been placed on paid administrative leave.”
It also has not received a report of the findings, according to a statement from the Utah National Guard briefed on the investigation Wednesday. The statement said all investigations by the inspector general are kept confidential and only those directly involved in the investigation have access to the details.
USA Today, citing sources familiar with the investigation, reported that Turley had an improper relationship with a subordinate.
Sexual harassment and assault has long been a problem in the military. According to the Department of Defense’s most recent annual report on the matter, 8,942 reports of sexual assaults involving military personnel were received – a 1% increase over the previous year.
Under Turley’s leadership, the Utah National Guard conducted a sexual violence awareness campaign in November 2021, and in the spring of 2022 he attended a town hall meeting at Camp Williams with Elizabeth Smart on the issue.
Turley welcomed President Joe Biden when he landed in Utah last week and was a guest of Senator Mitt Romney at this year’s State of the Union address. During his visit, Biden focused on celebrating the anniversary of the signing of the PACT Act, which offers benefits to veterans exposed to toxins from burn pits, Agent Orange and other hazards.
Romney’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In a February statement, Romney said, “The Utah National Guard embodies our state’s core values: patriotism and service. Led by Maj. Gen. Turley, these distinguished men and women have answered the call of duty to protect Utahns and Americans in times of need and bravely responded to threats around the world. It is an honor to have him as a guest of my State of the Union address tonight.”
Cox is promoted to Brigadier General in the US Air Force. General Daniel Boyack as Interim Adjutant General of the Utah National Guard. Boyack is the commander of the Utah Air National Guard and assistant adjutant general. He began his career in 1994 with the Utah Air National Guard.
“The UTNG is a resilient organization composed of lower-level leaders who are ready to adapt to rapid change,” the Utah National Guard said in a statement. “There will be no impact on the Utah Guard’s readiness or capabilities during a smooth transition. The Utah National Guard remains fully operational and all deployments, events and activities are being conducted as currently planned.”