Distinguished Honorees

    The U.S. Air, Space, and Missile Defense Distinguished Civilian Wall of Fame honors past members of the organizations dedicated to support the United States efforts in air, space, and missile defense.

    This wall honors selected civil servants who made a significant engineering, scientific, technical, analytical, management, or administrative contribution to the research, development, test, and evaluation of missile defense and space technologies or systems. Selected civil servants must also have maintained a high level of commitment to the Nation’s missile defense and space missions.

    The Air, Space, and Missile Defense Association (ASMDA) is proud to sponsor this U.S. Air, Space, and Missile Defense Distinguished Civilian Wall of Fame. New members are nominated and selected every other year.

    Click on the Honoree's name for a full Bio

    Sara L. Bruce          ( 1 ) Prior to 2000

    Ms. Bruce held various supervisory budget and program analyst positions during her tenure with the organization until her retirement from the Systems Technology Project Office in August 1979.

    C. E. Richardson, Jr.          ( 2 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Richardson served with the SAFEGUARD program from its inception. He was the Chief Engineer, SAFEGUARD System Command in 1972 and the Deputy Commander for Ballistic Missile Defense Systems Command in 1975.

    Paul O. Phillips          ( 3 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Phillips served in the positions of Deputy Director, Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Directorate; Deputy Director, Test and Systems Engineering Support Directorate; Chief Scientist; and Chief Engineer.

    Julian Davidson          ( 4 ) Prior to 2000

    Dr. Davidson served in the positions of Chief, Threat Analysis and Systems Effectiveness Branch; Director, Advanced Ballistic Missile Defense Agency; Special Assistant for Site Defense Safeguard System Office; and Deputy BMD PM.



    William F. Graves          ( 5 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Graves served in the Engineering Division of ZEUS Project Office. He also served in various supervisory positions until his retirement from the Systems Technology Project Office in February 1980.



    William A. Davis, Jr.          (6 ) Prior to 2000

    Dr. Davis served as Director, Ballistic Missile Defense Advanced Technology Center from 1971 until 1977, when he was assigned as Deputy Ballistic Missile Defense Program Manager.



    William O. Turney          ( 7 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Turney served in the contract office since 1958, where he became the top contractual authority for the command. He also served as Special Assistant for Management and Administration.



    William O. Davies          ( 8 ) Prior to 2000

    Dr. Davies served in the positions of Director Army BMD Advanced Technology Center Optics; Director Systems Analysis / Battle Management; and Technical Director for the Commander.



    Cecil Dale (Rich) Richardson          ( 9 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Richardson served as Director of Systems Project, Ballistic Missile Defense Systems Command and developed the Army’s Defense-In-Depth Approach to the President’s Strategic Defense Initiative.



    John E. Reece          (10) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Reece joined the U.S. Army Ballistic Missile Defense Systems Command serving as PM for the SENTRY Ballistic Missile Defense System, a $300M per year R&D effort with a staff of 300.



    Alan D. Sherer          (11) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Sherer led the High Endoatmospheric Defense Interceptor Project Office. In 1991 he was the U.S. Army PM of the Year.  He also served as Acting Program Executive Officer for Missile Defense.


    Bobby Sisco          ( 12) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Sisco led the analysis team for the Sentinel Antiballistic Missile defense system deployment as a special assistant to the Missile Defense System Manager.  The goal of the Sentinel Program was to provide a “thin umbrella” of protection against a limited nuclear strike, such as might be launched by Communist China. After a brief retirement, Mr. Sisco returned to government service as Deputy Director of the Advanced Technology Center.

    Fred Stevenson          ( 13 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Stevenson Was The Program Manager For The Missile Site Radar (Msr).  The Missile Site Radar Was A Major Element Of The Stanley R. Mickelsen Safeguard Complex, The United States’ Only Operational Abm (Anti-Ballistic Missile) Defense System. The Sensitivity And Selectivity Of The Receiver Enabled The Detection And Discrimination Of Targets Within A Background Of Electrical Noise And Debris And Could Detect Targets Of Small Cross Section At Ranges Of Several Hundred Miles.

    James C. Katechis           (14 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Katechis Was The Program Manager For The Ground Based Interceptor Program And Was Responsible For The Successful, Non-Nuclear, High Exoatmospheric, Hit-To-Kill Of A Test Reentry Vehicle.


    Lois N. Spruiell           (15 ) Prior to 2000

    In 1986, Ms. Spruiell was Comptroller for the U.S. Army Strategic Defense Command. She functioned as the principal staff advisor and action officer for financial and program management.


    Wallace E. Kirkpatrick          ( 16 )     Prior to 2000

    Mr. Kirkpatrick established the Advanced Research Projects Agency.  He also served as Director Program Management and Deputy Director Ballistic Missile Defense Advanced Technology Center.



    Jerry W. Cavender          ( 17 ) Prior to 2000

    Mr. Cavender served as Director, Systems Analysis and Battle Management.  He also served as PM for both the Ground-based Surveillance and Tracking System and the National Missile Defense Program Office.



    Edward L. Wilkinson           ( 18 ) Prior to 2000

    Dr. Wilkinson joined the U.S. Army Ballistic Missile Defense Advanced Technology Center in January 1977.  In 1981 he was the PM for the Homing Overlay Experiment and in 1986 the Director of the Kinetic Energy Weapons.



    A. Q. Oldacre            ( 19 ) 2001

    Mr. Oldacre served as Deputy PM for the PATRIOT during DESERT STORM and was responsible for PATRIOT Advanced Capability-3. He also served as Deputy Program Executive Officer for Air and Missile Defense.


    Robert G. Menotti           ( 20 ) 2001

    Mr. Menotti worked in the Army Rocket and Guided Missile Agency and NIKE-X Project Office. In 1984, he became Deputy PM for the Airborne Optical Adjunct where COBRA JUDY and COBRA BALL became key data collection sensors.


    Michael A. Holtcamp           ( 21 ) 2001

    Dr. Holtcamp served in the NIKE-X Project Office, Deputy PM for the Joint Theater Missile Defense Project, PM for Arrow, and as the Chief Engineer of the Program Executive Office Air and Missile Defense.


    Tom A. Bair          ( 22 ) 2001

    Mr. Bair served as the Deputy Chief of Staff for Resource Management and the Assistant Career Personnel Manager. Prior to SMDC, he also worked with Tank Automotive Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, and the Corps of Engineers.


    Frank Vann           ( 23 ) 2001

    Mr. Vann served as PM for collecting missile defense data using infrared optical sensors.  He was responsible for breakthroughs including Beryllium Mirrors and silicon long-weave infrared detector focal plane arrays.


    Thomas Patton           ( 24 ) 2001

    Dr. Patton served as the Arms Control and Treaty Advisor for the US Army Strategic Defense Command and was highly respected as a recognized national authority within the DoD Arms Control community.


    Donald S. Russ           ( 25 ) 2001

    Mr. Russ specialized in reentry physics and was Chief of Radar in the Ballistic Missile Defense Advanced Technology Center.  He also served as the Director of the Ballistic Missile Defense Advanced Technology Center.


    James R. Pignataro, Sr.           ( 26 ) 2001

    Mr. Pignataro served as Chairman of the Ballistic Missile Defense Advanced Technology Center Active Search Program and was the Technical Director for Science and Technology of the Advanced Technology Center.


    Dr. Peter G. Pappas          ( 27 ) 2003

    Dr. Pappas served as the Chief Scientist of the U S Army Space and Strategic Defense Command. He demonstrated real-time stereo processing of early warning satellite data to detect ballistic missile launches.


    William E. Roberson, Jr.          ( 28 ) 2003

    Mr. Roberson served as Deputy PM and Acting PM for the Ground Based Interceptor Project Management Office.  His activities included the successful Integrated Flight Tests (IFT) 3 through 7.


    Melvin Capps          ( 28 ) 2003

    Mr. Melvin Capps served as a program director for the advanced research and development plans and programs for strategic and tactical survivability, lethality, advanced materials, and power.


    Thomas M. Perdue          ( 30 ) 2005

    Thomas M. Perdue served as Chief, Systems Technology Systems Definition Office; and manager of the Army’s Ballistic Missile Defense Systems Command’s Low Altitude Defense Project.  Mr. Perdue also served as Assistant Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Ballistic Missile Defense) in the Office of the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Advanced Technology); and was the Principal Assistant Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Advanced Technology).

    Dr. J. Richard (Dick) Fisher          ( 31 ) 2005

    Dr. J. Richard (Dick) Fisher served as Executive Director of the Missile Defense and Space Technology Center.  Dr. Fisher pioneered much of the work in ballistic missile target discrimination and sensor phenomenology.  He initiated the Army’s development of directed energy for ballistic missile defense which is now manifested in the THEL system.

    Dr. Shelba Proffitt           ( 32 ) 2005

    Dr. Shelba Proffitt served as Program Manager of the Army’s National Missile Defense Program in the Program Executive Office for Air and Missile Defense.  She became Deputy Program Executive Officer, Air, Space, and Missile Defense.  Dr. Proffitt, a pioneer for women in the missile and defense industry, was the first female member of the Senior Executive Service at the U.S. Army Strategic Defense Command in Huntsville, Alabama.

    Mr. Edward Harris Vaughn          ( 33 ) 2005

    Mr. Edward Harris Vaughn joined the Army’s ballistic missile defense program and the public affairs field in 1968, and he directed the public affairs activities of the Strategic Defense Command and its predecessors from 1977 to July 1986. With the expansion of the command’s mission under the Strategic Defense Initiative, he managed the command’s Public Affairs Office located in Huntsville, Alabama until January 1997.

    Dr. Rankin A. Clinton, Jr.          ( 34 ) 2007

    Dr. Rankin A. Clinton, Jr. served in the Army Ballistic Missile Agency at Redstone Arsenal and worked on the Redstone; Juno; Jupiter; Pershing; Saturn I, II, III, IV; and Jupiter missiles.  Dr. Clinton’s Soviet missile expertise established the Missile Intelligence Office at Redstone Arsenal.  Later transitioning to the Missile and Space Intelligence Center, Dr. Clinton served as Director until his retirement from government service in 1985.

    Thomas M. Devanney           ( 35 ) 2007

    Mr. Thomas M. Devanney served as the Deputy Program Director for the National Missile Defense Joint Program Office, the Deputy Program Director for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense Joint Program Office, and as the Acting Program Director for the GMD JPO.  Mr. Devanney played an instrumental role in developing, testing, building, and ensuring a GMD initial capability was fielded on 30 September 2004.

    Jess F. Granone           ( 36 ) 2007

    Mr. Jess Granone served as the Director, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Technical Center; Director, Sensors Directorate (SDMTC); Technical Director, PEO Missile Defense; and PM, Theater Missile Defense Project Office.  Under his leadership, the PAC 3 hit-to-kill candidate was selected; SMDC developed the first integrated directed energy technology program; and the first KATYUSHA rocket was shot down by a laser.

    John G. Cady          ( 37 ) 2009

    Mr. John Cady began his legal career with missile defense as a civilian attorney in 1971, when he joined the legal team of the U.S. Army Safeguard Command and culminated his career with his appointment as Chief Counsel of the Huntsville Legal Office of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command /Army Forces Strategic Command in 2003. Throughout his 30 plus year Army career, Mr. Cady served with distinction anticipating legal vulnerabilities and making several systemic changes overcoming significant legal obstacles to achieving management and organizational goals by almost single-handedly building from ground up the command’s Labor Law, EEO Law, Personnel Law, and Environmental Law Programs. The hallmark of his service has been his diligence and imagination as a problem-solver, and dedication to advancing our Nation’s space and missile defense programs.

    Mr. Otto Peter Cerny           ( 38 ) 2009

    Mr. Otto Peter Cerny was born in Linz, Austria, on October 1, 1946, and came to the United States in 1957 when his father joined the Wernher von Braun team to work on rockets.  He served in excess of 25 years in federal government civil service with the last 21 years in the Missile Defense Agency and its predecessor organizations, Strategic Defense Initiative Organization and Ballistic Missile Defense Organization. He also served in the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command.  Mr. Cerny’s contributions to the Technology Advancement and Small Business Innovative Research programs earned him national recognition.   Pete Cerny consistently demonstrated a strong commitment to the furtherance of the objectives of space and missile defense organizations, programs, and people.

    Dr. Darrell W. Collier          ( 39 ) 2009

    Dr. Darrell W. Collier distinguished himself in over 33 years of service to the United States Army.  As the Chief Scientist, United States Army Space and Missile Defense Command, his leadership led to the identification and exploitation of new opportunities, improving the effectiveness of the United States Army and the defense of the nation.  Dr. Collier served as a member of the “NMD Tiger Team” and was an important architect of the “3+3” NMD development program – a key construct that moved the NMD system to a point where rapid deployment could occur.  Dr Collier was the Army lead in support to the BMDO “Theater Missile Defense Cost and Operational Effectiveness Analysis” and also played a significant role in the creation of the first Army Directed Energy Master Plan. Dr Collier contributed greatly in making the USASMDC a viable leader in space control and awareness, missile defense, and directed energy technology.

    Dr. Glen Priddy          ( 40 ) 2009

    Dr. Glenn Priddy served 27 years in federal government civil service as a member of the Missile and Space Intelligence Center, (including five years as Director) and as a member of the Space and Missile Defense Command’s Technical Center. As Director of MSIC, he directed engineering performance, capability, and vulnerabilities assessments of foreign weapon systems including ballistic missile systems, anti-satellite weapons, and directed energy weapon systems. During his assignment at SMDC, Dr. Priddy also served in the Alabama Department of Homeland Security where he was responsible for all Science and Technology programs and personally led the development of an interoperable communications architecture for the State of Alabama.  For over three decades, Dr. Priddy has made significant technical, business, and leadership contributions in the areas of Scientific and Technical Intelligence, Space and Missile Defense, and Homeland Security.

    Dr. Bernard W. Vatz          ( 41 ) 2009

    Dr. Bernard W. Vatz has over 43 years of experience with 35 years in Ballistic Missile Defense, working in the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command and its predecessors.  Dr. Vatz is truly one of the pioneers of missile defense.  His primary areas of expertise include system engineering, trades studies, radar, signal processing, sensors, discrimination, communications, countermeasures, threat analysis, technology forecasting – not to mention – Ballistic Missile defense, Theater Missile Defense,  and Cruise Missile Defense systems.  Dr. Vatz was also instrumental in sensor technology development and exploitation, including the successful demonstration and technology insertion of the X-Band solid state transceiver module into the Ground Based Radar GBR program for the Missile Defense Agency’s X-Band Family of Radars