Even as a West Point Cadet (1911-1915), Eisenhower showed great leadership potential. He had a reputation for being an efficient and dependable officer. He said that one of his career goals was “to perform every duty given me in the Army to the best of my ability and to do the best I could to make a creditable record, no matter what the nature of the duty…” and that “my ambition in the army was to make everybody I worked for regrettable when I was ordered to other duty.”
Over the next 27 years Eisenhower was assigned various duties in Panama, Europe, the US and the Philippines that uniquely prepared him for high command. He benefited from the mentorship of five career army officers; Major George S. Patton, Jr. (later General), Brigadier General Fox Conner (later Major General), General John Pershing, General Douglas MacArthur, and General George C. Marshall. Each helped shape Eisenhower’s development as a leader. George C. Marshall appointed him to high command in World War II.