The Commission

The authorizing legislation for ABMC (36 U.S.C., Chapter 21) specifies that the president will appoint not more than 11 members to the commission and an officer of the Army to serve as the secretary. President Barack Obama appointed Max Cleland to serve as secretary in June 2009. Commissioners Darrell Dorgan, John Estrada, Evelyn Foote, Rolland Kidder, Richard Klass, Merrill McPeak, Constance Morella and Maura Sullivan were appointed in July 2010. Subsequent appointments by the President include Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel in December 2010; Ike Skelton in July 2011; Cindy Campbell in September 2011; Thomas Lamont in March 2014; and Larry Ellis in May 2014. Commissioner Foote resigned in August 2012; Commissioner Skelton died in October 2013.

Commission

Merrill A. McPeak – Chairman

Retired Air Force Gen. Merrill McPeak was chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force from 1990 to 1994. A career fighter pilot, he flew 269 combat missions in Vietnam, some of them while in command of the Misty squadron of high speed forward air controllers. In 1967-68, he performed as a demonstration pilot in 199 official air shows as a member of the Air Force's elite aerobatic team, the Thunderbirds. Before becoming Air Force chief, he commanded the 20th Fighter Wing, 12th Air Force, and the Pacific Air Forces. Since retirement from active military service, McPeak has made a second career as an investor and director of public and private companies. McPeak holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from San Diego State College, a Master of Science degree from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and is a graduate of the National War College. Print | Read Less

Cindy Campbell – Commissioner

Cindy Campbell is vice president for operations at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). She assists with CPB's administration of budgets, grants and contracts; organizes annual business planning activities; works with CPB's staff to improve internal processes; and helps facilitate cross-departmental activities. Campbell, a retired lieutenant commander, spent 30 years of active duty service in the U.S. Navy. She was qualified as a surface warfare officer, and assigned to numerous ships during her career including a carrier, a command ship, an oiler and a destroyer. Campbell served overseas with Commander Fleet Mediterranean in Naples, Italy and with Commander Fleet Activities in Yokosuka, Japan. She was stationed in the Pentagon on 9/11. And she also was assigned to the staff of the Secretary of Navy Legislative Affairs on Capitol Hill. Her last assignment was in the East Wing of the White House as the Military Office Director of Administration. She served in both the Bush and Obama administration. Following completion of her Navy career, she was the vice president for communications for the Fisher House Foundation, serving veterans, active duty and their families by providing comfort homes at military and VA medical centers worldwide. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Chaminade University in Honolulu, Hawaii and a Master’s of Science in Education from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va. Print | Read Less

Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel – Commissioner

Dr. Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel is Vice Chair of the New York State Council on the Arts, and Chair of the Historic Landmarks Preservation Center, since 1995. Diamonstein-Spielvogel was the first Director of Cultural Affairs for New York City, and was the longest-serving Landmarks Commissioner in New York City's history, spanning four mayoral administrations from 1972 to 1987.  The Chair of NYC Landmarks50, she is former Chair of the New York City Landmarks Preservation Foundation, and former member of the New York City Art Commission, and New York City Cultural Commission. Diamonstein-Spielvogel was appointed by President Ronald Reagan to the board of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, where she chaired the sub-committee that commissioned the original art for the museum; and by President Bill Clinton to the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, where she was the first woman vice chair in its 100-year history.The recipient of numerous honors and awards, she is the author of dozens of magazine and newspaper articles, of 20 books, producer of nine television series, and curator of seven international museum exhibitions—one of which traveled to 82 countries. More than 200 of her interviews can be seen on Duke University's YouTube site. Diamonstein-Spielvogel serves on many boards, including The Trust for the National Mall, the High Line, the Fresh Air Fund, the Museum of Modern Art (ex officio),and the New York State Board for Travel and Tourism. Print | Read Less

Darrell Dorgan – Commissioner

Darrell Dorgan is the owner of Dakom Communications, which is involved in producing historical documentaries for television and real estate ventures. He also served for 14 years as the executive director of the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame, retiring in 2011. In that capacity, he spearheaded the effort to build the Western Heritage Center that was named the national Cowboy Museum of the Year in 2010. Prior to that service, Dorgan spent 25 years as a television journalist, finishing his career as a producer, anchor, and writer for the Prairie News Journal, an hour-long news program viewed in three states and two Canadian provinces. Dorgan is the recipient of more than 50 state, regional and national awards for journalistic excellence and served as the first journalist in residence at the University of Maine in Presque Isle. He received this honor a second time and he has had a scholarship named after him. Dorgan is a U.S. Army Vietnam veteran, a member of AMVETS, and the Disabled American Veterans.   Print | Read Less

Larry R. Ellis – Commissioner

Retired Army Gen. Larry Ellis has been president and CEO of VetConnexx, LLC since 2013, a company that provides career opportunities for veterans based in Atlanta, Georgia.  He is also president and CEO of ESSE, LLC, a facilities management consulting company.  He was president and CEO of Point Blank Solutions, Inc. from 2005 to 2009. Ellis served in the Army from 1969 to 2004, and achieved the rank of Four Star General in 2001. He served in numerous command and leadership positions in the United States, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Germany, South Korea, and Vietnam. He is a member of the University System of Georgia Board of Regents, the Morgan State University Board of Regents, and the Armed Forces Benefit Association. His awards include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Army Distinguished Service Medal, the Bronze Star Medal, and the NAACP National Service Award. Ellis attended the U.S. Army War College and received a B.S. from Morgan State University and an M.S. from Indiana University. Print | Read Less

John L. Estrada – Commissioner

Retired Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. John L. Estrada works for the Lockheed Martin Corporation as senior manager for Lockheed Martin Training Solution Incorporated. He was the 15th Sergeant Major of the U.S. Marine Corps from June 2003 to April 2007. Prior to stepping down from the position in 2007, he served 34 years in the Marine Corps. His personal awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal with three gold stars, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, the Joint Services Achievement Medal, and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal. Estrada is a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Southern Watch. He is a board member for Operation Home Front, a nonprofit organization that provides emergency assistance for military troops, the families they leave behind, and wounded warriors when they return home. He is also a member of Mission Readiness. Print | Read Less

Rolland Kidder – Commissioner

Rolland Kidder is a director of Friends of the National World War Memorial, Inc., a Washington-based nonprofit organization. From 1994 to 2001, Kidder served as an ABMC Commissioner and was a member of its World War II Memorial Committee. He is the author of “A Hometown Went to War”, an oral history of 37 veterans describing their experiences during World War II. Kidder is a Vietnam War veteran.   Print | Read Less

Richard L. Klass – Commissioner

Retired Air Force Col. Dick Klass is a distinguished graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy and the National War College. . In Vietnam he flew over 200 combat missions as a forward air controller. His military decorations include the Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross, Legion of Merit and Purple Heart. After retiring from the military, Klass held several senior positions with U.S. aerospace and consulting firms. He sits on the boards of the Falcon Foundation at the Air Force Academy and the Council for a Livable World. He received a Master of Arts degree and a Master of Letters degree from Oxford University in England as a Rhodes Scholar and served as a White House Fellow. Print | Read Less

Thomas R. Lamont – Commissioner

Thomas R. Lamont served as Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs at the Department of Defense from 2009 to 2013. He has also served as special counsel to the University of Illinois since 2005, and was executive director of the Illinois Board of Higher Education from 2004 to 2005. Before entering private practice, he served as executive director of the Office of the Illinois State’s Attorney Appellate Prosecutor and director of Civil Litigation in the Office of the Illinois Attorney General. Lamont is a member and former chair of the University of Illinois Board of Trustees, and a retired colonel in the Illinois National Guard, where he served as the state staff judge advocate general. Lamont received a B.S. from Illinois State University and a J.D. from the University of Illinois College of Law. Print | Read Less

Constance Morella – Commissioner

Ambassador Constance Morella served as a congresswoman for the state of Maryland for 16 years, during which she was a member of the Committees on Science and Government Reform as well as chair of the Subcommittees on Technology and the District of Columbia. She also served as the ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). During that time she was a key participant in negotiations to enlarge the OECD with five new member states. After leaving the OECD in 2007, she began serving as a professor at American University’s School of Government, where she teaches courses in women, politics, and public policy.   Print | Read Less

Maura C. Sullivan – Commissioner

Former Marine Capt. Maura Sullivan was born and raised in Evanston, Ill. and attended Northwestern University on an ROTC scholarship. After graduating she served more than five years on active duty in the Marines as a logistics and operations officer. Her first assignment was to Okinawa, Japan where she served throughout southeast Asia in support of joint military exercises. She deployed to Fallujah, Iraq in 2005 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and served there with distinction, earning a Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal. Upon separating from active duty, Sullivan began degree programs at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and Harvard Business School, where she was elected co-president of Harvard's Armed Forces Alumni Association. Sullivan graduated from Harvard in 2009 and accepted a role in PepsiCo's Leadership Development Program.   Print | Read Less

Max Cleland – Secretary

Max Cleland has served his country for nearly 50 years. After graduating from Stetson University in DeLand, Fla. in 1964, where he was commissioned in the U.S. Army, Cleland obtained a master's degree in American History from Emory University in Atlanta. He went on active duty in the fall of 1965. He volunteered for Vietnam in 1967. Rising to the rank of captain, Cleland was wounded in combat and after a year-and-a- half in military and VA hospitals, he returned to his home state of Georgia. Elected to the state senate in 1970, where he served two terms, Cleland was appointed head of the Veteran's Administration under President Jimmy Carter in 1977. In 1981 he returned to Georgia and was elected first as Secretary of State and then as U.S. Senator.  Print | Read Less

Previous Commissioners

George W. Bush Administration 2001-2009

  • P. X. Kelley (Chairman until 2005)
  • Frederick M. Franks (Chairman beginning in 2005) 
  • Julius W. Becton, Jr.  
  • Patrick H. Brady
  • Leslie G. Baker  
  • Chester L. Berryhill, Jr. 
  • Donald T. Bollinger  
  • James B. Culbertson     
  • James B. Francis 
  • Frederick M. Franks
  • Jerry L. Laws
  • Antonio Lopez
  • Zell B. Miller 
  • Thomas E. Morris 
  • Carol A. Mutter  
  • Joseph E. Persico
  • James M. Reynolds, III   
  • Sara A. Sellers  
  • Alan K. Simpson
  • Will Hill Tankersle  
  • Sue Ellen Turner  

William J. Clinton Administration 1993-2001

  • P. X. Kelley (Chairman until 1994)
  • Frederick F. Woerner, Jr. (Chairman beginning in 1994)
  • Francis J. Bagnell 
  • William P. Campbell  
  • Hugh L. Carey   
  • Aubrey O. Cookman
  • Evelyn P. Foote
  • Gabriel Guerra-Mondragon    
  • Jack O. Guy
  • Steve M. Hilton
  • Rolland F. Kidder  
  • Douglas Kinnard
  • Robert C. Laughter  
  • Alfred S. Los Banos
  • Thomas G. Lyons 
  • John C. McDonald
  • Ned R. McWherter
  • Brenda L. Moore  
  • Frank B. Moore  
  • Ronald D. Ray
  • Gail H. Reals
  • Ed L. Romero     
  • Mark V. Rosenker
  • Peter W. Senopoulos 
  • William G. Simpson  
  • David H. Sudderth
  • William M. Wardlaw
  • F. Haydn Williams 

George H.W. Bush Administration 1989-1993

  • Andrew J. Goodpaster (Chairman until 1990)  
  • P. X. Kelley (Chairman beginning in 1990)  
  • Francis J. Bagnell 
  • Kitty D. Bradley
  • William P. Campbell  
  • Aubrey O. Cookman
  • Jack O. Guy
  • Robert C. Laughter
  • Preston H. Long
  • Armistead J. Maupin
  • John C. McDonald   
  • Freda J. Poundstone  
  • Ronald D. Ray
  • Mark V. Rosenker   
  • Peter W. Senopoulos 
  • David H. Sudderth      

Ronald Reagan Administration 1981-1989

  • Mark W. Clark (Chairman until 1984)  
  • Andrew J. Goodpaster (Chairman beginning in 1985)  
  • Francis J. Bagnell 
  • Edwin Bliss Wheeler
  • Kitty D. Bradley
  • Joseph W. Canzeri  
  • Aubrey O. Cookman
  • Redford C. Early
  • William E. Hickey
  • Preston H. Long
  • Armistead J. Maupin
  • John C. McDonald
  • Freda J. Poundstone  
  • Lawrence A. Wright     

James Carter Administration 1977-1981

  • Mark W. Clark (Chairman)   
  • Gerhard D. Bleicken
  • Leslie H. Fry
  • Fred C. Bramlage 
  • William G. Bray  
  • Alfred P. Chamie  
  • Benjamin 0. Davis, Jr. 
  • William C. Garrison     
  • T. Harry Gatton 
  • James H. Gavin 
  • Anna Mae Hays
  • James L. Holloway III  
  • Harold A. Horn  
  • Oliver E. Meadows  
  • John M. Pope  
  • Charles E. Potter
  • Harvey A. Roffman 
  • Richard J. Vander Platt 
  • Louis H. Wilson 

Gerald R. Ford Administration 1974-1977

  • Mark W. Clark (Chairman)  
  • Gerhard D. Bleicken
  • Fred C. Bramlage
  • William G. Bray
  • Alfred P. Chamie
  • Leslie H. Fry   
  • William C. Garrison  
  • Leslie E. Gehres
  • Harold A. Horn  
  • Charles E. Potter     
  • Harvey A. Roffman
  • Richard J. Vander Platt

Richard M. Nixon Administration 1969-1974

  • Mark W. Clark (Chairman)   
  • Gerhard D. Bleicken
  • Fred C. Bramlage 
  • Alfred P. Chamie
  • T. C. Connell
  • Leslie H. Fry
  • William C. Garrison  
  • Leslie E. Gehres
  • Harold A. Horn
  • Edward F. McGinnis
  • Harry J. Middleton, Jr.
  • Charles E. Potter  
  • Harvey A. Roffman 
  • Carl Spaatz
  • Richard J. Vander Platt 
  • Clinton F. Wheeler   

Lyndon B. Johnson Administration 1963-1969

  • Jacob L. Devers (Chairman)  
  • Leslie L. Biffle
  • T. C. Connell
  • Joseph C. Duke 
  • T. Harry Gatton
  • Felton M. Johnston  
  • Thomas C. Kinkaid   
  • Edward F. McGinnis
  • Harry J. Middleton, Jr.   
  • Mrs. Charles G. Peters
  • Charles E. Potter  
  • Sidney Salomon, Jr.
  • Carl Spaatz 
  • Alexander A. Vandergrift
  • Austin T. Walden     

John F. Kennedy Administration 1961-1963

  • Jacob L. Devers (Chairman)  
  • Leslie L. Biffle      
  • Joseph C. Duke 
  • T. Harry Gatton
  • Thomas C. Kinkaid
  • Charles E. Potter  
  • Mrs. Charles G. Peters
  • Sidney Salomon, Jr.
  • Carl Spaatz 
  • Alexander A. Vandergrift
  • Austin T. Walden  

Dwight D. Eisenhower Administration 1953-1961

  • George C. Marshall (Chairman until 1959)
  • Jacob L. Devers (Chairman beginning in 1960)
  • Leslie L. Biffle
  • Benjamin 0. Davis    
  • Joseph J. Foss  
  • Forest A. Harness  
  • Thomas C. Kinkaid   
  • Edward F. McGinnis
  • John Phillips 
  • Charles E. Potter
  • Mrs. Theodore Roosevelt 
  • Carl Spaatz    
  • Alexander A. Vandergrift
  • Mrs. Wendell L. Wilkie

Harry S. Truman Administration 1945-1953

  • John J. Pershing (Chairman until 1948)
  • George C. Marshall (Chairman beginning in 1949)  
  • Joseph C. Baldwin  
  • Leslie L. Biffle
  • Mrs. Henry Fenimore Baker   
  • Finis J. Garrett
  • Edward C. Kalbfus     
  • Harold A. Keats    
  • Dr. John Markey
  • Burnet R. Maybank
  • David A. Reed
  • Alexander A. Vandergrift
  • Robert G. Woodside   

Franklin D. Roosevelt Administration 1933-1945

  • John J. Pershing (Chairman)  
  • Leslie L. Biffle   
  • J.P. B. Clayton Hill 
  • Mrs. Henry Fenimore Baker
  • Finis J. Garrett
  • Dr. John Markey      
  • David A. Reed
  • Robert G. Woodside

Herbert Hoover Administration 1929-1933

  • John J. Pershing (Chairman)     
  • J.P. B. Clayton Hill 
  • Mrs. Henry Fenimore Baker
  • Finis J. Garrett
  • Dr. John Markey
  • David A. Reed   
  • Robert G. Woodside

Calvin Coolidge Administration 1923-1929

  • John J. Pershing (Chairman)     
  • Mrs. Frederick W. Bentley
  • J.P.B. Clayton Hill
  • Finis J. Garrett
  • Dr. John Markey
  • Thomas W. Miller  
  • David A. Reed   
  • Robert G. Woodside  

Learn More About ABMC

Established by Congress in 1923, the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) commemorates the service, achievements, and sacrifice of U.S. armed forces.