Sergeant Major Swankoski enlisted in the Marine Corps in December 1985 and underwent recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina. Upon graduation from boot camp, he reported to Infantry Training School, Camp Geiger, NC for MOS training as a 0311 infantryman. In June 1986, he was assigned to Marine Barracks Subic Bay Republic of the Philippines. During this time period he was promoted to Corporal and served as Corporal of the Guard, Sergeant of the Guard with Bravo Company.
Upon returning to the states in September 1987, Corporal Swankoski was assigned to Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines where he served as a fire team leader. He was transferred within the battalion to serve with Headquarters and Service Company until 1990. During this time he deployed to Okinawa, Japan as part of the UDP. Upon the unit's return to CONUS Corporal Swankoski was reassigned to Lima Company for deployment to Panama in support of Operation “Promote Liberty” in 1990.
In July of 1990, Corporal Swankoski was selected as a member of the newly formed Riverine Assault Craft Platoon, 6th Marine Regiment to test and evaluate the Riverine Assault Craft for the Marine Corps. He initially served as a boat captain and then boat team commander upon his promotion to Sergeant. Sergeant Swankoski departed active duty in December 1991.
In September 1992, Sergeant Swankoski began drilling with the Marine Corps Reserve. He was assigned to Headquarters Battery 3rd Battalion, 14th Marines, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and served as the battalion armorer. He served as battalion armorer until selection to First Sergeant in 2001.
In July of 2001, First Sergeant Swankoski assumed duties as Company First Sergeant for Headquarters and Service Company, 4th Combat Engineer Battalion, Baltimore, Maryland.
In July of 2004, First Sergeant Swankoski reported to India Battery, 3rd Battalion, 14th Marines, Reading Pennsylvania and assumed duties as Battery First Sergeant. In September 2006 First Sergeant Swankoski deployed with “I” Battery 3/14 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Upon his return, First Sergeant Swankoski was promoted to Sergeant Major.
In July 2007, he reported to Marine Air Support Squadron Six (MASS-6) in Chicopee, Massachusetts and assumed duties as Squadron Sergeant Major. In October 2010 he was reassigned to Marine Fighter Attach Squadron 112 (VMFA-112), NAS JRB Forth Worth, Texas as the Squadron Sergeant Major. In April of 2011 he assumed the duties as Group Sergeant Major for Marine Air Training Support Group 42 (MATSG-42), NAS Pensacola, Florida where he is currently serving as the Group Sergeant Major.
Sergeant Major Swankoski’s personal awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal (with gold star in lieu of 2nd award) and Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal.