Lieutenant Colonel Root enlisted in October 1989 as an Infantryman and was assigned to Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 2d Marines where he deployed to Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. He reported to 2d Marines Regimental Scout Platoon in June 1991 assigned as a Scout Sniper and Reconnaissance Man, and was honorably discharged in 1993.
Lieutenant Colonel Root was commissioned in April 1998 upon graduation from the Georgia Institute of Technology. After completing the Basic Officer, Infantry Officer, and Military Intelligence Officer Basic Courses he was assigned to 2d Battalion, 11th Marines serving as a Battalion Intelligence Officer and Headquarters Battery Commander.
He reported to 1st Reconnaissance Battalion in June 2000 where he served as Platoon Commander, 5th Platoon, and deployed to Okinawa, Japan attached to 2d Battalion, 5th Marines as the Battalion Landing Team Amphibious Reconnaissance Platoon for the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit. There his platoon assisted in Humanitarian Assistance/Disaster Relief operations in East Timor.
In April 2002, Lieutenant Colonel Root reported to the Navy and Marine Corps Intelligence Training Center, Dam Neck, VA, attending the MAGTF Intelligence Officer Course, then served as Department Head for Enlisted Intelligence Training and Operations Officer. During his tour he deployed in support of 1st Marine Division to Ramadi, Iraq as Intelligence Operations Officer from January to July 2004.
In June 2005, he assumed duties as the Commanding Officer, Alpha Company, 3d Reconnaissance Battalion, Okinawa, Japan. He commanded the Company through a deployment to Fallujah, Iraq. In 2007 he assumed command of Bravo Company and provided trained Reconnaissance Platoons in support of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit.
In June 2008, he reported to United States Southern Command, Miami, Florida, where he served as the Chief, Collection Operations Division and Executive Officer to the Director of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance. In June 2011, Lieutenant Colonel Root attended the US Army Command and General Staff College, graduating with distinction.
In July 2012, Lieutenant Colonel Root reported to 7th Marine Regiment where he served as the Regimental Intelligence Officer through the Regiment’s combat deployment to Afghanistan.
In June 2014, he was assigned to I Marine Expeditionary Force as the G-2 Operations Officer. Concurrently, he served as the 1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade AC/S G-2.
His operational experience includes OPERATION DESERT SHIELD/DESERT STORM, OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM 04, 05-07.2 and 06-08.1 (Counter-insurgency operations- Ramadi, Fallujah and Karmah, Iraq), and OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM 12.1 and 13.1 (Counter-insurgency operations – Helmand Province, Afghanistan).
His personal awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (Gold Star in lieu of 2nd award), Navy Commendation Medal (with Combat Distinguishing Device and Gold Stars in lieu of 5th award), Navy Achievement Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and the Combat Action Ribbon (Gold Star in lieu of second award). He is a qualified Expeditionary Ground Reconnaissance Officer, Marine Combat Diver, and Military Freefall Parachutist.
He holds a BS in International Affairs from the Georgia Institute of Technology, a certificate in Economics, and a Master in Public Administration, from Troy University.