The Citadel Class of 2016: Honorary Degrees
The Citadel Board of Visitors presented honorary degrees to six people during commencement exercises for the South Carolina Corps of Cadets and The Citadel Graduate College on May 7, 2016.
Gen. Stanley Allen McChrystal, USA, (Ret.), Commencement speaker for The South Carolina Corps of Cadets
McChrystal is a great American warrior whose service to his country has spanned more than three decades. A retired four-star general, he is an esteemed leader with deep military roots. After graduating from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1976, he joined the infantry, beginning his military career as a platoon commander in the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. A prominent public figure and military leader, he served as commander of Joint Special Operations Command from 2003 to 2008. McChrystal began his last command in 2009 when the president of the United States and the secretary general of NATO appointed him the commander of U.S. Forces Afghanistan and the NATO International Security Assistance Force, where he commanded more than 150,000 troops from 45 allied countries. He is a scholar and a disciplined visionary who is credited with creating the current counter-insurgency strategy in Afghanistan as well as a ground-breaking comprehensive counter-terrorism organization. Through his keen vision, he revolutionized special operations in the United States military. McChrystal is currently a senior fellow at Yale University, where he teaches a course on leadership in operation, and he is a co-founder and partner of the McChrystal Group. For his extraordinary leadership, courage and service to country, The Citadel Board of Visitors is proud to award General Stanley Allen McChrystal the honorary Doctor of Military Science degree.
Col. Cole Christian Kingseed, USA, (Ret.), Commencement speaker for The Citadel Graduate College
Kingseed is a former military leader, a scholar and an internationally acclaimed author. He is a 30-year infantry veteran who commanded at the platoon, company and battalion levels before being granted tenure as full professor of history and chief of military history at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Kingseed is the co-author of The New York Times bestseller Beyond Band of Brothers: The War Memoirs of Major Dick Winters as well as author of several important works, including Eisenhower and the Suez Crisis of 1956, The American Civil War, From Omaha Beach to Dawson’s Ridge, Old Glory Stories, and Conversations with Major Dick Winters. He is a celebrated expert on military history and leadership, and a featured expert for the History Channel, where he has appeared in documentaries on Generals George S. Patton, Jr., and Douglas MacArthur. In 2009, Kingseed received the Army Historical Foundation’s Distinguished Writing Award for his article on U.S. Army leadership during World War II. He is a founding partner of Battlefield Leadership, a leadership consulting and training company. For his service to country, his scholarship and his contributions to the field of military history, The Citadel Board of Visitors is proud to award Colonel Cole Christian Kingseed the honorary Doctor of Letters degree.
Lonnie Norris Carter
Carter, Citadel Class of 1982, is a revered business leader and a loyal alumnus whose professional and civic endeavors demonstrate his commitment to the common good. He is the president and chief executive officer of Santee Cooper, the state’s largest power producer and renewable energy generator as well as the source of electricity for two million residents. In this role, he is both a fiscally and environmentally responsible leader. As a graduate of both the Corps of Cadets and The Citadel Graduate College, Carter serves his alma mater through his time, leadership and generous support. His voluntary service and contributions to the school of business and The Citadel Foundation’s Campaign Steering Committee make him a sterling role model to the cadets he mentors. For his distinguished career, his loyalty and his unflagging support of his alma mater, The Citadel Board of Visitors is proud to award Lonnie Norris Carter the honorary Doctor of Commerce degree.
Judge Robert Nathaniel Jenkins, Sr.
Jenkins, a member of The Citadel Class of 1972, is a veteran, a judge and a trailblazer. After four years of service in the U.S. Air Force during Vietnam, he enrolled at The Citadel in 1969 as a veteran student. When he graduated in 1972, he became the fourth African American to receive an undergraduate degree from the college. After graduating from the University Of South Carolina School Of Law, he began an illustrious career in law during which he dedicated himself to providing equal justice for the poor. Through his tireless efforts, the number of legal aid offices in several South Carolina counties grew, and he established a program that enabled private lawyers to provide free legal services to those who could not be helped through legal aid offices. For his courage, his ethical leadership and his commitment to the less fortunate, The Citadel Board of Visitors is proud to award Judge Robert Nathaniel Jenkins, Sr. the honorary Doctor of Jurisprudence degree.
1st Lt. Patrick Cleburne McClary, III, USMC, (Ret.)
McClary, known to thousands as “Clebe McClary,” is an American hero, and Lowcountry native. During the Vietnam War, while some of his contemporaries were staging anti-war protests, the Lowcountry native was serving as a platoon leader in the First Reconnaissance Battalion. On the battalion’s Nineteenth patrol, the unit was attacked by the Viet Cong. McClary was seriously wounded, losing his left arm and left eye, yet he continued to lead his men. The numerous surgeries and long recovery period that followed could have taken a bitter toll, but he faced his rehabilitation with characteristic determination. In the years since, Lieutenant McClary has become a symbol of courage and hope to the many audiences around the world with whom he has shared his story. For his patriotism and his inspiration, The Citadel Board of Visitors is proud to award First Lieutenant Patrick Cleburne McClary III the honorary Doctor of Public Service degree.
Lt. Col. Frederick James Whittle, USMC, (Ret.)
Whittle is a 1980 Citadel graduate who served as the regimental commander his senior year and graduated magna cum laude. His years since his graduation have been marked by the same standard of excellence. A fighter pilot, Whittle flew 36 combat missions in the Persian Gulf War, serving in the Marine Corps for 20 years. In the civilian sector, he is the vice president and chief operating officer of Jupiter Holdings, which employs 400 workers in Charleston. He is a member of St. James Church, and he works with One80 Place (formerly Crisis Ministries), the Boy Scouts of America and the Exchange Club. With service to The Citadel Alumni Association, The Citadel Foundation, The Citadel Brigadier Foundation and The Citadel Trust, he has served his alma mater generously with his time and contributions. For his spirit of leadership, generosity and service, The Citadel Board of Visitors is proud to award Lieutenant Colonel Frederick James Whittle the honorary Doctor of Commerce degree.
About The Citadel
The Citadel, with its iconic campus located in Charleston, South Carolina offers a classic military college education for young men and women profoundly focused on leadership excellence and academic distinction. Graduates are not required to serve in the military but about 30 percent of each class commission as officers in every branch of U.S. military service. Graduates of The Citadel have served the nation, their state and their communities as principled leaders since the college was founded in 1842. The Citadel Graduate College offers 26 graduate degree programs with 42 concentration options, 24 graduate certificate programs, and seven evening undergraduate programs, through an all-evening schedule, with many courses now available online. The college has been named Best Public College in the South by U.S. News and World report for five consecutive years, and #3 Best College for Veterans in the South, as well as the best value out of all South Carolina colleges and universities, by Forbes.