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News | March 21, 2014

General Powell Receives Honorary Doctorate from National Defense University

(Washington DC) Former Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Colin Powell, United States Army (Ret.), received an honorary degree of Doctor of National Security Affairs from National Defense University (NDU) on Wednesday 11 December at 1300 in Abraham Lincoln Hall Auditorium. Dr. John Yaeger, NDU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, presented the degree and introduced General Powell. 

General Powell began his military service when he was commissioned as a second lieutenant after graduating from the Army ROTC program at City College of New York in 1958. General Powell received a master’s degree from the National War College in 1976 and later served as President Reagan’s National Security Advisor from 1987-89 and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for both Presidents Bush and Clinton from 1989-1993. During his tenure as Chairman, General Powell oversaw such operations as the intervention in Panama and Operation Desert Storm.

Following his retirement in 1993, General Powell served as Secretary of State for President Bush from 2001-2005. Aside from his government service, General Powell is the Honorary Chair of the Colin L. Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at the City College of New York and the founder of America’s Promise Alliance, an organization that seeks to give children the fundamental resources they need to succeed.

General Powell’s numerous awards include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Army Distinguished Service Medal, two Presidential Medals of Freedom, the President’s Citizens Medal, and the Congressional Gold Medal, as well as induction into the French Legion of Honor and honorary knighthood by H.M. Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom. He was also previously inducted into the NDU National Hall of Fame in 2004.

General Powell has been an avid supporter of National Defense University, telling guests at the dedication of the Richard A. Chilcoat International Student Center in January 2011 that “…we are going to make a better world for our people, a better world for promotion of individual liberty, by promotion of democracy, by helping people in need. One way to do that is to gather people from around the world and bring them to a place like NDU.” After receiving his honorary degree from NDU, General Powell addressed NDU students, faculty, and staff on the continued importance of the university.

See more photos of the event.