Col. Anthony C. Aiken Sr. (U.S. Army, retired), Chair, Tuskegee University ROTC Hall of Fame
Col. Teresa Freeman Townsend (U.S. Army, retired), Executive Director, Tuskegee University ROTC Hall of Fame
Michael Tullier, Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing
More than 106 years of combined military service, three Legion of Merit Awards and one Bronze Star — just a few of the characteristics that define the 2019 class of inductees into Tuskegee University’s ROTC Hall of Fame. The class includes one retired U.S. Air Force brigadier general, one retired U.S. Air Force colonel and current Senior Executive Service member, two retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonels, and one retired U.S. Army captain.
The five will be honored for their contributions to the military and the university during an induction ceremony on Friday, Nov. 8 at 6 p.m. The ceremony, to be held in the Gen. Daniel “Chappie” James Center, is one of many campus events comprising the university’s homecoming week festivities.
“The ROTC Hall of Fame highlights the professionalism and dedication demonstrated through our inductees’ service to our nation,” said Col. Anthony C. Aiken Sr. (U.S. Army, retired), who helped establish the hall of fame and now chairs its annual induction ceremony. “They have served our nation with dignity, duty and honor, and we are proud to celebrate their careers in this significant way.”
Established in 2016, Tuskegee’s ROTC Hall of Fame honors individuals who have exemplified the attributes of leadership, integrity, moral courage and self-discipline commonly associated with military service. Those eligible for induction include Tuskegee graduates, former students and others who are or have been commissioned into the U.S. armed forces, participated in the university’s ROTC programs, or earned a commission upon graduating and pursued military service as a career are eligible for induction — provided they meet other rank or meritorious service requirements.
“We salute this year’s inductees whose remarkable military and professional careers have deemed them worthy of the quintessential honor of being inducted into Tuskegee University’s ROTC Hall of Fame,” said President Lily D.McNair. “Their service to our country and their representation of Mother Tuskegee through their valor and patriotism are indeed commendable.”
The Junior Infantry Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, commonly known as ROTC, was established in February 1919 at what was then Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute. At the time, all male students 14 years of age or older who were in “good physical condition” were required to enroll in the unit, which included only Army programming. During World War II, the Army Air Corps contracted with then-Tuskegee Institute to conduct primary pilot training for African Americans — with Moton Field serving as the only site for training the black aviators who would become known as the Tuskegee Airmen.
In 1946, when the Air Force ROTC was established, Tuskegee was among the original 78 colleges and universities to host Air Force programming. In 2013, the university added a joint Navy ROTC in partnership with Auburn University to train qualified young men and women for service as commissioned officers in the Navy and Marine Corps.
Today, the university’s Air Force, Army and Navy ROTC programs are under the command of distinguished military officers Lt. Col. Michael King, Maj. Melvin E. Kindle and Capt. Willie Billingslea, respectively.
This year’s inductees — combined with the 85 inductees comprising the hall of fame’s previous classes — bring the Hall of Fame’s membership to 90 retired and killed in action servicemen and servicewomen. They include:
Lt. Col. Richard L. Allen, M.D. ’73 (U.S. Army, retired)
After earning a bachelor’s degree in biology from Tuskegee, Allen was commissioned in the Army in 1973 and served until his retirement in 1993. During his 20-year military service, he earned the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal (with two oak leaf clusters), the Army Service Medal and the Flight Surgeon Badge. He also holds a doctor of medicine degree from the University of Florida.
Brig. Gen. James Timothy Boddie Jr. ’54 (U.S. Air Force. retired)
As commandant of cadets for Tuskegee’s Air Force ROTC program, Boddie influenced many of the university’s cadets during his tour of duty, which included teaching “Military Aspects of World Political Geography” and “International Relations” courses to senior cadets preparing for assignments in Vietnam. Boddie was commissioned in 1954 and served in the Air Force until his retirement in 1983. During his 29-year military career, he earned the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal and Distinguished Flying Cross, the Legion of Merit Award, and the Meritorious Service Medal (with two oak leaf clusters). He holds a bachelor’s degree from Howard University, a master’s from Auburn University, and a senior management in government degree from Harvard University.
Lt. Col. William L. England Jr., J.D. ’64 (U.S. Army, retired)
After earning a bachelor’s degree in secondary education from Tuskegee, England was commissioned in 1964 and served in the Army until his retirement in August 1986. During his 22-year military career, he earned the Legion of Merit Award, the Defense Meritorious and Meritorious Service Medal (with one oak leaf cluster), and the Vietnam Service Medal (with five oak leaf clusters). He also holds a master’s in history from Butler University and a law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Col. Clarence A. Johnson ’74 (U.S. Air Force, retired), Senior Executive Service
After earning a bachelor’s degree in biology from Tuskegee, Johnson was commissioned in 1974 and served in the Air Force until he retired in 2003. At that time, he was selected to the Senior Executive Service and currently serves as director of the U.S. Department of Defense’s Office of Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity. During his 29-year military career, he earned the Legion of Merit Award, Defense Meritorious Service Medal (with one oak leaf cluster) and the Defense Superior Service Medal (with three oak leaf clusters). He also holds a master’s degree from Webster University and a professional certificate from Georgetown University.
Capt. Donald K. Silvey, J.D. ’67 (U.S. Army)
After earning a bachelor’s degree in social studies from Tuskegee, Silvey was commissioned in 1967 and served in the Army until 1973. During his six-year military career, he earned the Bronze Star, Defense Language Institute Medal and the Army Commendation Medal (with one oak leaf cluster). He also holds a master’s degree from George Washington University and a law degree from the Howard University Law Center.
© 2019, Tuskegee University