Hometown Hero: U.S. Army Veteran, Jim Hopkins

Syracuse University employee and U.S. Army  Veteran, Jim Hopkins, was honored as “Hometown Hero” during Saturday’s SU Mens’s Lacrosse vs. Navy game.

Jim Hopkins,was born in Syracuse, New York and was raised on Tipperary Hill. Jim attended St. Patrick’s Grammar School, Bishop Ludden High School, Onondaga Community College and graduated from Syracuse University with Bachelor of Science Degree in biology in 1992.

After graduating from high school, Jim enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1971. He attended basic training at Fort Dix, New Jersey, served in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a Senior Quarry Machine Operator, and completed one tour of duty in the Republic of Vietnam.

Jim married his wife Cathy of 33 years on September 29th, 1984, the same day the Syracuse University football team upset #1 ranked Nebraska in the Carrier Dome. Jim and Cathy are the proud parents of two children, both Syracuse University Alums, son Matthew ’09, and daughter Tamara ’12.


Today, Jim works as the IT Director at the David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics. He has been with Syracuse University for 23 years, and he is active in in the Syracuse University Veteran Affinity Group as its Digital and Social Media Specialist.


Student Veterans Organization Celebrates Student Veterans Success

The Syracuse University Student Veterans Organization (SVO) recently hosted its fourth annual SVO Ball and Awards Banquet celebrating the successes of student veterans. Proceeds from the event were donated to Clear Path for Veterans, a local veterans’ resource and community center.

The SVO welcomed Jeff Cleland as the keynote speaker. Cleland, who is the director of organizational excellence with the Maryland State Highway Administration, holds a B.A. in policy studies from the Maxwell School and is completing the executive M.P.A. at Maxwell in December 2018. Cleland encouraged student veterans to leverage everything Syracuse University has to offer and become brand ambassadors for veterans and excellence.


six photos of Lewis, LeGrand, Cordial, Carson, Quartaro and Whaley

SVO leadership also recognized several student veterans for their excellence and achievements, both academic and serving the larger community. SVO Treasurer Daniel Lewis, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and a senior studying information management and technology in the School of Information Studies, received the Sergeant Danny Facto Award for Best VA Work Study, given by the Veterans’ Resource Center in memory of the very first VA Work Study participant, U.S. Army Sergeant Danny Facto, who was killed in a motorcycle accident following his appointment. Adam LeGrand, U.S. Air Force veteran and communication and rhetorical studies major in the College of Visual and Performing Arts, was awarded the Best for Vets award for his work as one of the first Disability Services Liaisons in the country, assisting veterans every day, and for his support of the SVO.  Daniel Cordial, an Army veteran and the SVO community relations coordinator, was awarded the Community Support Award for his efforts this year, which included a successful care package campaign.  Tristan Carson, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and English Education Major in the College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Education, was given the People’s Choice Award for his positive attitude and participation. Marine Corps veteran Katherine Quartaro, the SVO secretary, PAVE team leader and a forensic science and psychology major in the College of Arts and Sciences, was awarded Student Veteran of the Year by the Office of Veteran and Military Affairs. Student veterans who achieved a GPA of 3.5 or higher during the Fall 2017 semester, and those graduating in May 2018 were recognized as well.

“I am proud to have had the chance to lead this organization this year. The annual ball and awards banquet is vital to our community. It’s a chance for us to celebrate our successes throughout the year as well as relax and have a good time with our fellow comrades and supporters,” says Kierston Whaley, SVO president. I’m beyond proud this year’s administration was able to pull off such a successful event.  We raised over $1,600 for Clear Path for Veterans and thanks to donations from local businesses, we were able to raise just over $300 for the SVO. I’m excited to see what next year brings for Adam and his team, and will be back to support future generations of SU Student Veterans!  Go Orange!”

“It is important and inspiring to support our student veterans in their efforts to pursue their educational dreams,” says Ron Novack, Office of Veterans and Military Affairs executive director. “The success of our student veterans is a win for all—our student veterans, our university and our nation. We are proud of the enduring commitment of our university to make Syracuse University the best place for veterans.”


LIS Alumna Helps Veterans Preserve Their Stories

Annabelle Weiss dropped out of Hunter College in 1943 because she wanted to enlist in the armed services. With her parents’ consent, she joined the U.S. Marines and reported for training at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, in April 1944. There she learned to “march, march, march” and was assigned to inspect airplane engines. Weiss was later assigned to Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina. She served in the transportation unit, where her tasks included chauffeuring the base’s commanding officer. She was discharged in 1946.

Edna Susman seated at a table

Edna Susman

Weiss, then 94, shared her story with Edna Susman G’78 as part of the Veterans Testimonial Project, a program of the Half Hollow Hills Community Library in Suffolk County, New York. She’s one of nearly 90 U.S. military veterans Susman has interviewed since 2014. “I’m trying to get the word out so libraries see this as history and outreach,” Susman says. “People are dying, and I want to get their stories to share with younger generations.”

Susman discussed the project during her keynote address March 3 at the Day of FiTs conference (FiTS stands for Filling in the Spaces) at the School of Information Studies (iSchool). The Library and Information Science Student Assembly organized the annual event, which featured topics of interest to LIS graduate students that are outside the regular curriculum. Workshops addressed issues including professional resumes vs. CVs, nature programming for libraries and LGBTQ representation in middle grade and young adult literature.

Susman started the project after realizing the busy library where she had worked for 20 years offered no specific outreach for local veterans. She described how the project works, saying that other library staffs can replicate it easily and inexpensively. She advertises and invites veterans to participate, then records interviews with them and creates a DVD. She uploads the interviews to the library’s YouTube channel, which patrons can access via the library’s website. The library also holds an annual reception for the year’s interviewees, and each veteran receives a DVD.

Some interviews happen after Susman spots someone wearing a hat with military insignia and tells them about the program. Others hear about it and call to learn more. She understands that some veterans will be sharing painful memories.  “I tell them if there’s anything they don’t want to talk about or don’t remember, that’s fine,” she says.

“Some say ‘I have nothing to say’ or ‘I didn’t do anything interesting,’” Susman adds. But she disagrees, calling the vets “wonderful people with amazing stories.” The oral histories of veterans of World War II, the Korean and Vietnam wars, the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq and military service during peacetime preserve important memories for families and historians, she says.

Susman interviewed one woman who served in the medical corps in Afghanistan who “didn’t go into details.” A World War II veteran who worked on the atomic bomb “knew top secret stuff.” One Vietnam vet volunteered to become a combat photographer “because he didn’t want to kill anyone.”

After Susman’s program was underway, she learned the Library of Congress had started the Veterans History Project (VHP) in 2000. The national project collects interviews, correspondence and memorabilia from veterans and their families. Susman applied some VHP procedures to her project and sends the Library of Congress copies of the DVDs she produces.

Susman grew up in Syracuse and earned a degree in music from the University of Indiana. She still plays and teaches flute. She credits a neighbor, longtime iSchool professor Marta L. Dosa, with encouraging her to enroll in the School of Information Studies. Pauline Atherton Cochrane, another longtime iSchool professor, also served as a mentor.

“Without them, my life would have been very different,” she says.

After completing her master’s degree, she sought jobs as a music librarian. Cochrane tipped her off to a three-month position at the Library of Congress, “a dream job” in Washington, D.C. Susman spent five years teaching congressional and library staff to search the Library of Congress system.

Online research, then in its infancy, “was all command driven,” she explains. “Nobody knew how to do it. We’d type in ‘search and retrieve.’” She loved working at “the mother of all libraries,” she says. “You really felt like you were making a difference.”

She and her husband moved to Long Island, where she raised their two daughters, both Syracuse University graduates. After several part-time jobs—including three at once—she started working at Half Hollow Hills Community Library. She describes library work as “giving people the information they need.”

The job has changed dramatically since her iSchool days. “People can Google everything,” she says. “Now we help people download material and work with their devices.”

She enjoys interviewing veterans “because I get to know them,” she says. “When they come in the library, they’re family. I’m in awe of these people.”


Chancellor Kent Syverud Hosts 101st Chancellor’s Review for ROTC Cadets

Chancellor Kent Syverud and leaders from Syracuse University and its Office of Veteran and Military Affairs will be joined by special guests, alumni, community members and educational partners to host the 101st Annual Chancellor’s Review. The celebration includes an awards ceremony and public review of the ROTC cadets in the Carrier Dome on Friday, March 9, at 10 a.m.

“Syracuse University’s ROTC cadets are smart, hardworking and civic-minded,” says Chancellor Syverud. “They have a deep sense of purpose, and they make the campus community a better place. It is a privilege to help prepare them for national service. And we will be here to support them when they return to civilian life, through our National Veterans Resource Center and other veteran-focused initiatives.”

Syracuse University, via its Academic Strategic Plan, is committed to building on its long legacy of supporting the nation’s veterans and military families. For example, the University has the longest, continuously running Army ROTC program and is consistently placed among the best universities for veterans rankings.

Celebration attendees will view the current ROTC members perform drill and ceremony in formation as they are reviewed by Chancellor Syverud. Cadets will also be presented with awards celebrating their many achievements throughout the year. The 10th Mountain Division Band from Fort Drum, New York, will provide music during the ceremony.

The annual Chancellor’s Review is open to the public. All members of the Syracuse University community are encouraged to attend the event. Parking will be available in the Irving Garage. Please call ahead with special parking needs. Attendees may enter the Carrier Dome through Gates A, B, C and E.


Veteran-Focused Video Produced by Syracuse University Receives Emmy Nomination

“Gateway for America’s Veterans,” a video produced by the team in the University’s Office of Electronic Media Communications (EMC), has received an Emmy nomination from the New York Chapter of The National Association of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS).

The video tells the story of Syracuse University’s historic commitment to generations of the nation’s veterans. Created in partnership with the University’s Office of Veteran and Military Affairs (OVMA), the 10-minute production helps further the University’s outreach and advance its mission of assisting veterans in pursuing their education after separating from military service both academically and personally.“We’re pleased that NATAS has recognized our team with this honor,” says EMC Executive Director and Producer Stu Lisson. “The New York chapter is the most competitive in the nation, with affiliates from all of the major networks taking part.”

“With its longstanding commitment to veterans, Syracuse University continues to be uniquely positioned to educate and empower this generation of veterans, military-connected students and family members and positively impact the future leaders of our nation through higher education,” says Ron Novack, OVMA executive director. “So we are proud of the recognition for the video that is such a valuable tool, helping us tell our story and reinforce our commitment to being the ‘best place for veterans’.”

Between 1945 and 1950, the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, commonly known as the GI Bill, supported some 2.3 million students nationwide. Few universities in the country were more closely identified with the GI Bill than Syracuse University. Chancellor William Tolley promised servicemen and women there would be places waiting for them at the University when they returned, and enrollment more than tripled in the years immediately after the war. Syracuse then ranked first in New York State and 17th in the country in veteran enrollment and today, the University ranks continually in the Top Ten. Syracuse University continues to remain deeply committed to the military, veterans and family members and this video captures the outstanding support military-connected students receive while attending the university. It also gives veterans an opportunity to “tell their story” about transitioning from military to campus life.

Producer Meg Lynch adds, “It was a privilege to help tell Syracuse and OVMA’s remarkable story and document the inspiring comments from the program’s veterans.”

This is the sixth consecutive year that the EMC team has received an Emmy nomination for production excellence.


Syracuse University Paints New Orleans Orange at National Conference for Military-Connected Students

Leaders from Syracuse University’s Office of Veterans and Military Affairs (OVMA), Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF), Career Services, Veterans Affinity Group, and the Veterans Resource Center attended the 2018 NASPA Symposium on Military-Connected Students in New Orleans, Louisiana, recently. Hosted annually, the NASPA Symposium on Military-Connected Students focuses on effective strategies to serve and support the success of veterans and other military-connected students.

The three-day conference consisted of breakout sessions geared toward administrators in higher education for training, resource sharing and fact-finding about opportunities and advancement of student veterans within the institutions of higher education.

Syracuse University leaders shared “best practices” with other universities on making professional graduate degrees more veteran-friendly, including a presentation about the VET-MGMT project by the IVMF funded by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) from 2014-2017. The goal of this project is to develop accelerated and stackable graduate degrees at Syracuse University for student veterans. The “Advancing Veterans Success in Higher Education” report was one of the outcomes of the VET-MGMT and was leveraged in highlighting the “best practices” at NASPA.

The SU team also presented a detailed poster outlining a simulation project currently underway on the campus. The “VET-SIM: Designing Simulations to Support Transitions from Military Service to Collegiate Study” is an effort to support veterans and strengthen their pathways through collegiate study. Professor Benjamin Dotger, with the support of Syracuse University’s School of Education is partnering with the IVMF, and OVMA to design and implement a VET-SIM, a simulation model of real-life challenges experienced on campus by student veterans to help veterans navigate and overcome barriers to collegiate success.

“It is critical to be present at conferences, such as NASPA, to share best practices as well as learn what others are doing within higher education serving our nation’s veterans and military-connected students,” says Ron Novack, OVMA executive director. “During NASPA, I made many great connections with my peers from other academic institutions, shared ideas and brought back to campus additional ideas to assist in solidifying our commitment in making Syracuse University the ‘Best Place for Veterans.’ It was great to hear many colleagues in higher education are using IVMF’s research and using our university work as best examples in the nation serving those who have served.”


Student Veteran Profile: Ryan Gross ’18, University’s First Tillman Scholar

Growing up, Ryan Gross was always inspired hearing about his grandfathers’ World War II experiences, including leading tank units at the Battle of the Bulge and serving on a Navy destroyer in the Pacific. It was this connection that led him to become a military intelligence officer in the U.S. Army. These experiences instilled in Ryan the value of public service and the need for strategic thinking in the military. He transitioned from the Army to working for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) after his deployment in Baghdad. For over a decade, Gross has led intelligence analysis for ambassadors, policymakers and commanding generals.

Ryan Gross

Now, as a Syracuse University student veteran, Gross is representing the Orange as its first-ever Tillman Scholar.

Syracuse University became an official Pat Tillman Foundation University Partner in 2016, joining 14 other universities across the country. The University was chosen for its commitment to providing support to student veterans and their spouses.

The scholarship was named after Pat Tillman, a former NFL player for the Arizona Cardinals who left his professional football career to join the U.S. Army Rangers following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The Pat Tillman Foundation was founded in 2004, following Tillman’s death while serving in Afghanistan. The foundation’s mission is to unite and empower remarkable military veterans and spouses as the next generation of public and private sector leaders committed to service beyond self. Listen to Ryan Gross describe his experience as a Tillman Scholar. Gross is a candidate for the master of public administration  at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs.

“Just having my name mentioned in the same sentence as Pat Tillman is a tremendous honor,” Gross says. “Pat gave 110 percent on everything he did, and was the epitome of selfless service, so being one of 60 selected by his foundation out of 2,100 applicants is incredibly humbling. Pat’s legacy, my experiences with the foundation and interaction with fellow Tillman scholars provides me the motivation I need to give 110 percent to everything I do here at Maxwell and my life beyond Maxwell.”

Gross added that his experience at Syracuse has been incredible.

“Being away from my wife and kids in Florida is hard, but everyone from the OVMA, the VA office, Maxwell faculty and my classmates at Maxwell have been amazing, and have made Syracuse my home away from home,” he says. “I’ve met incredible students who are going to go on to do amazing things in their careers. I’m glad that being a Tillman Scholar provided me the opportunity to experience all of the great things at Syracuse University.”

Tillman Scholars are chosen for outstanding academic performance and leadership potential. The Tillman Scholar fellowship program supports Tillman Scholars with academic scholarships, a national network and professional development opportunities so they are empowered to make an impact in the world. Scholarship money is used to assist with academic expenses, such as tuition and fees, living expenses and books.

Applications for the 2018 Tillman Scholarship open Feb. 1 and close March 1 for active-duty service members, veterans and military spouses at Syracuse University.

Applicants must provide documentation of their military service, or their spouse’s. Additionally, they must submit a resume, two essay responses and a third-party recommendation. To apply to be at Tillman Scholar, visit the Pat Tillman Foundation application site.

Finalists will be chosen in April and will be interviewed by the Pat Tillman Foundation. For assistance with the application process, please contact Jolynn Parker, director of the Center for Fellowship & Scholarship Advising, at 315.443.2759.


Veterans Affinity Group Hosting Community Social

The Syracuse University Veterans Affinity Group is hosting an SU Veterans Community Social in partnership with the Office of Veteran and Military Affairs (OVMA) on Tuesday, Feb. 13, from 5-9 p.m. at Orange Crate Brewing Co., 731 S. Crouse Ave. All are invited to attend—not only veterans and military-connected faculty, staff and students at Syracuse University, but anyone with a passion for serving veterans and who enjoys community service projects throughout the academic year.

Three people, including one in a "Real Veterans Wear Orange" T-shirt, pushing a dolly of packages
Care packages for deployed service members being prepared

“The Office of Veteran and Military Affairs is proud to work with the Veterans Affinity Group to bring everyone together,” says U.S. Army Col. (Ret.) Ron Novack, OVMA executive director. “It’s an exceptionally supportive and inclusive group for anyone who is dedicated to serving veterans, whether they have served themselves or not.”

The Syracuse University Veterans Affinity Group’s mission is to create an engaging community and develop cross-campus partnerships in an effort to support the University’s military-connected employees and students. Expanding membership beyond veterans and military-connected people further strengthens the University’s commitment to enhancing everyone’s campus experience and creating a distinct sense of community.

“Rather than focusing on themselves, veterans often seek out opportunities to continue to serve,” says Edward A. Kiewra (lieutenant colonel, U.S. Army, retired), research associate at the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment (OIRA). “The Syracuse University Veterans Affinity Group provides a means for veterans, those who are still serving their country and military-affiliated individuals to meet on a regular basis, enjoy that shared camaraderie typical of military organizations, and engage in projects and activities through which they can continue to serve the University and surrounding community.”

The group was established in 2014 under its first president, Jake VanMarter, credited with creating the program for faculty and staff who are veterans at Syracuse University. The group’s new president, Jennifer Renee Pluta, also serves as Syracuse University’s assistant director of Veteran Career Services at the OVMA. In her new role, Pluta looks to expand the group’s membership and participation. Her main goals are to:

  • engage the veteran community;
  • unite faculty and staff veterans and members of military-connected community;
  • influence veteran-related policies on campus; and
  • inform the Syracuse University and greater Syracuse community.

“Under Jennifer’s leadership, coordination and organizational skills, she has taken the group to a whole new level,” says Philip Benedict, Physical Plant facilities supervisor and U.S. Air Force veteran. “Jennifer is welcoming of all, military and non-military alike. She sees this as one for all, all for one. We are here, we are family, we are ONE!”

“Jennifer has done a great job of bringing veterans together from all categories at the University—in ways they never have before,” added Robert Murrett (vice admiral, U.S. Navy, retired), deputy director of the Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism and professor of oractice at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. “It’s a terrific organization.”

For those interested in joining the Veterans Affinity Group, monthly meetings are held on the second Thursday of the month from noon-1 p.m. at various locations across the campus. The next meeting is on Thursday, Feb. 8, at Dineen Hall, room 300L, hosted by  Murrett.

To get updates or join the Veterans Affinity Group, fill out this form for more information or follow the group’s Facebook and Twitter at @SUVetsAffinity.


‘Best Place for Vets’ in Full Force at Student Veterans of America Conference

Syracuse University student veterans and members of the Office of Veterans and Military Affairs, the Institute for Veterans and Military Families, the Veterans Affinity Group, and University admissions attended the Student Veterans of America National Conference in San Antonio in early January.

Syracuse University turned the Lone Star State orange recently as over 20 Orange student veterans, the Office of Veterans and Military Affairs (OVMA), the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF), the team from the Veterans Affinity Group, and University admissions attended the Student Veterans of America (SVA) National Conference in San Antonio in early January.

Syracuse boasted the largest Student Veteran Organization student chapter in attendance and in total the University had over 30 people at the conference. SVA’s national conference is the largest annual gathering of student veterans, advocates, thought leaders, stakeholders and supporters in higher education in the world. Over 2,000 student veterans, higher education professionals, alumni and employers attend for training, recruiting and fact-finding about opportunities for student veterans.

The three-day conference consisted of breakout sessions geared toward student veteran success and post-graduation opportunities. Syracuse University had the most presentation and panel discussions—five—than any other university, sharing “best practices” (campus resources, culture, research and analytics, entrepreneurship, financial literacy) with other universities and solidifying the University’s commitment to making the University the “Best Place for Veterans.”

Leaders from OVMA and the University led a panel discussion about the role on-campus resources play in maximizing student veteran networks, resources and the importance of professional networking as well as critical financial literacy.

IVMF’s Research and Evaluation team’s presentation focused on debunking the myths surrounding veterans as college students and discussed empirical evidence touting the benefits of enrolling these non-traditional students on a campus. In addition, IVMF delivered training on entrepreneurship in conjunction with key University partners—First Data, Disney and the Small Business Administration —reinforcing the program and resources available to student veterans interested in starting a business while pursuing education.

Student veterans were able to network with members from the OVMA, IVMF and University admissions learning about all that Syracuse University has to offer to student veterans on campus and at training programs around the U.S.

“It is critical to empower our student veterans and afford them the opportunity to attend the SVA National Conference, where they learn a great deal of best practices, bring those back to campus to further enrich their student experience and that of others at Syracuse University,” says Ron Novack, OVMA executive director. “None of this could happen without the generous support of our gracious donors and supporters of the Veterans Legacy Fund(VLF), who enabled us to send our 20 student veterans to the conference this year. We hope others will join the VLF and help us increase that number next year.”

James Gilchrest, Newman’s Own Foundation Fellow at the IVMF and National Guardsman, attended the conference. “I was ecstatic when I learned I would be going to #NatCon2018. I am a former SVA chapter president and have always wanted to attend,” Gilchrest says. “During NatCon I made it my personal mission to share the programs IVMF offers as well as OVMA’s unique and supportive services on campus. I also made great connections with employers and other organizations who are terrific support resources for me as a student veteran. I’m proud to be affiliated with a university that keeps the needs of student veterans at the top of their priority list.”

Katy Quartaro ’18 USMC veteran and secretary of Syracuse University’s SVO, as well as a team leader for PAVE also attended. “One of the biggest things I learned at SVA NATCON was that the student veterans of Syracuse University are very lucky,” Quartaro says. “I do not think I would have been able to attend without the help of the University, OVMA and the Veteran Legacy Fund. The fact that I was able to focus on learning as much as possible without worrying about the financial impact, made the event that much better and reinforced the support student veterans here at SU really get.”

About Syracuse University

Founded in 1870, Syracuse University is a private international research university dedicated to advancing knowledge and fostering student success through teaching excellence, rigorous scholarship and interdisciplinary research. Comprising 11 academic schools and colleges, the University has a long legacy of excellence in the liberal arts, sciences and professional disciplines that prepares students for the complex challenges and emerging opportunities of a rapidly changing world. Students enjoy the resources of a 270-acre main campus and extended campus venues in major national metropolitan hubs and across three continents. Syracuse’s student body is among the most diverse for an institution of its kind across multiple dimensions, and students typically represent all 50 states and more than 100 countries. Syracuse also has a long legacy of supporting veterans and is home to the nationally recognized Institute for Veterans and Military Families, the first university-based institute in the U.S. focused on addressing the unique needs of veterans and their families.


Hometown Hero: LTC (U.S. Army Ret.) Ed Kiewra

Syracuse Employee and Army Veteran, Ed Kiewra will be honored as the Hometown Hero during the Syracuse Men’s Football game vs. Boston College on Saturday, November 25, 2017.

Lieutenant Colonel Kiewra was commissioned as a military intelligence second lieutenant in the US Army in September 1970 through the ROTC program at Hofstra University. Having been detailed as an infantry officer for his first year, he graduated from the infantry officer basic course, Ranger School, and jump school prior to his first assignment with the 25th Infantry Division. After serving as both a mortar and rifle platoon leader in an infantry company, he moved on to serving in several different capacities as an intelligence officer, including providing intelligence support for contingency operations assigned to the Division.


His next assignment was with the 82nd Airborne Division, where he served as the intelligence staff officer in an airborne infantry battalion, a Division intelligence reconnaissance and surveillance staff officer, and a company commander in the Division’s military intelligence battalion. He had many memorable and personally rewarding experiences as a commander, to include leading his company on an 8-mile run in formation, with the entire unit completing the run in just over one hour.


Following his five years with the 82nd Airborne Division, he served as a special security officer at a remote installation on the Black Sea coast in Turkey. He returned to the US for an assignment as a systems manager with the US Army Intelligence and Security Command, where he assessed future technical requirements and coordinated logistical and training life-cycle support for new technical systems at several strategic signals intelligence installations.


He was then assigned as a strategic intelligence officer with the Defense Intelligence Agency. In this capacity, he exercised primary analytical responsibilities for issues related to command, control, and communications functions associated with the transportation systems of former Warsaw Pact countries. He also researched, authored, and published four comprehensive studies and a number of shorter analytical papers and assessments related to Soviet military logistical capabilities and vulnerabilities in Afghanistan that were disseminated at the highest levels of the Department of Defense and Executive Branch, as well as to members of Congress.


His final assignment was at the Defense Language Institute, where he graduated from the Italian language course and served as the associate dean of the Asian School at the Institute. He retired from active military service in January 1991.


Lieutenant Colonel Kiewra’s commitment and dedication to the Army, its mission, and the soldiers with whom her served was best summarized by one of his battalion commanders, who said, “If I had to take my battalion into combat, I would want (then) Captain Kiewra as one of my company commanders.”