Executive Committee

John O’Neil previously served on the Board of Trustees (BOT) of the National Museum of the Mighty 8th Air Force from 2007 to 2015. In the final year of his term limit he was a member of the Board’s Executive Committee (EXCOM). John was actively involved in Museum sponsored events in the Atlanta area including the two successful fundraisers (Blue Jeans, Bomber Jackets and BBQ) and three events at the Atlanta History center. He was also involved in Savannah events including the Flying Fortress 5K (UPS Sponsored race) and the recent 20th Anniversary Museum Gala in May of 2016 (UPS Sponsored)

John O’Neil was born in Milton, MA.  He earned a BS in Business Management from Fairfield University School of Business in 1981.  He is currently the VP of Human Resources for UPS’s Global Workforce Panning & Strategy Group headquartered in Atlanta, GA.  In this role John’s primary responsibility is for ensuring that UPS attracts, recruits and acquires the talent necessary to fill the over 434,000 Worldwide UPS positions.  John’s career with UPS began in 1980 and has spanned over three and a half decades.  John has held both operations management and staff level assignments for UPS in CT, RI, MA, NY, SC, GA, IL, Belgium and Atlanta, GA.  Prior to his current assignment, John was VP of HR for UPS Global Supply Chain operations in North & South America, Europe and Asia.

John’s father was a combat Veteran of the Mighty 8th Army Air Force from 1942 -1945.  His father served as a B-17 crewman (Tail & Waist Gunner) on the 95th Bomb Group of the Lt. Bill Owen Crew.  That crew was transferred to the 482nd Bomb Group in late 1943 to experiment with the early “Bomb Through Overcast” (BTO) Radar platforms of H2S, H2X. John began attending Bomb Group and crew reunions with his father in the early 1980’s until his father’s passing in 2006.  John has spoken at several meetings and events over the years on the history of radar’s use in the 8th Air Force and the first successful bombing mission to Berlin on March 4th 1944.  John developed and currently hosts a website established in 2006 to the 482nd Bomb Group in honor of his father called www.482ND.org

John is a member of The National Museum of the Mighty 8th Air Force (Wing Commander), The Eighth Air Force Historical Society, the 100th Bomb Group Foundation, A Charter Member of the National World War II Museum, A Member of the American Association of Museums, and a Member of the Yankee Air Museum at Willow Run.

John and his wife Susan reside in Snellville, GA and are the proud parents of three grown daughters— Meghan, Erin and Colleen.

Born in Douglas, GA on April 14, 1950 and graduated in 1972 from Northwood University in Michigan with a BBA. He returned to Douglas to work in the family business with his father, Elton Brooks, a WWII B-17 Tail Gunner. This led Don to develop an intense interest in WWII aviation history. He has always said, “The more I learn about the great courage, sacrifice and dedication of our veterans, the more I feel obligated to do all that I can to honor them and to keep their memory alive.”

Don earned his private pilot license in 1980 and currently holds single-engine, multi-engine and instrument ratings plus type ratings in the Douglas DC-3 and Boeing B-17, and has over 4,500 total flight hours. In 1988 Don bought a C-47 (military DC-3), equipped it with skis and became part of The Greenland Expedition Society with Pat Epps. They were in search of the “Lost Squadron,” a flight of six P-38 fighters and two B-17 bombers that made a mass emergency landing on the Greenland Ice Cap in July, 1942. The crews were rescued, but the brand new planes were left behind to be covered in time by 260’ of ice and snow. Don was in charge of logistics for the three large expeditions in 1989, 1990 and 1992 when the P-38 “Glacier Girl” was recovered.

Don had hoped to rebuild one of the two B-17’s, but learned upon reaching it in 1990 that the B-17s were crushed beyond repair. Don immediately began to search Air Force crash records for another B-17; and found a good one that landed while low of fuel, on a frozen lake in Labrador. Although the crew was rescued, the plane went through the ice in the spring on 1947. A 14-year quest of locating, gaining rights to and retrieving the bomber from the bottom of Dyke Lake ended with the B-17 being trucked to Douglas, GA.

Married to Donnell Brooks, resides in Douglas and has one son, Elton D. Brooks, III. Don was inducted into the Georgia Aviation Hall of Fame in 2017.

General Shuler was born in Raleigh, NC.  He grew up in Orangeburg, SC and Caracas, Venezuela.  He holds a B.S. degree in Civil Engineering from The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina, and an M.S. degree in Management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. On 10 May 2014, he was awarded an honorary doctorate in Aerospace Science by The Citadel.

He served 32 years in the U.S. Air Force and was the Commander of the Eighth Air Force from March 1988 to May 1991. His flying career began in 1954 when he soloed in a J-3 Piper Cub.  This would lead to his logging over 8,000 hours in 32 different types of aircraft. General Shuler was awarded his Air Force wings on 2 September 1960 and would log 7,650 hours including 225 combat hours in military aircraft. These included serving as a B-52 and F-4 aircraft commander. Gen. Shuler commanded two non-tactical squadrons, two B-52 Bombardment Wings, two SAC Air Divisions, and the Eighth Air Force. He also served as the Director of Operations for the Strategic Air Command. He retired with the grade of Lt. General effective 1 June 1991.

General Shuler is a member of Tau Beta Pi, a national engineering honor society; The Order of Daedalians, a national fraternal order of pilots; The Military Order of World Wars. The Air Force Association, The Sons of the Revolution; The Kappa Alpha Order fraternity and The Citadel Association of Graduates. He was selected as a distinguished Eagle Scout in 2007 and elected to the South Carolina Aviation Hall of Fame in 2010.

General Shuler served as the Chairman and CEO of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force from June 1992 to May 2004.

Buck and his wife Annette Fontaine Maury reside in Columbia, SC. They have three sons and eight grandchildren.

Brent E. Bracewell is a native of Georgia, attended the University of Georgia and received his Army Commission through the Reserve Officers Training Corp program as a distinguished military graduate in 1986.  Brent went on to serve 26 years (13 Regular Army and 13 Active Guard) having the honor of leading the best soldiers in the world from the platoon level to the brigade command level, retiring as a Colonel in 2013. During his career in the Army, he served in Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom in Bosnia and Operation Iraqi Freedom.  He has successfully commanded soldiers at the Lieutenant, Captain, and Lieutenant Colonel level under both “imminent danger” and “combat conditions”. As an Army aviator, Brent had the privilege of qualifying and flying the UH-1, OH-58, C-12, and UH-60 Blackhawk.  He earned awards from the Army Achievement and Air Medal to the Bronze Star and Legion of Merit.


Brent’s volunteer service includes leading the Men’s Ministry for New Hope Church which has a campus in both Fayetteville and Peachtree City, GA.  He is an active member of the Civil Air Patrol,i where he serves as a Character Development Instructor mentoring and teaching cadets leadership and moral courage.  He is the Vice President of the GA Chapter of the Mighty Eighth Air Force Historical Society, and is a moderator for the History Program for the Commemorative Air Force, Peachtree City, GA, Dixie Wing.  Brent is both a member and long time supporter of the Mighty Eighth Air Force Historical Society and National Museum of Mighty Eighth Air Force, having no family connection with the Mighty Eighth but a life-long admiration and now a life time of friends who served in the Mighty Eighth.  Brent is also employed as a corporate pilot for The Southern Company, flying the S76C+ Helicopter.


Brent was a single father of four daughters until he met and married his lovely bride, the former Jill Carnahan (of California) in 2011 and they became a family with six daughters.  Jill is a career educator who loves history, exercise and shopping (not in that order). Jill and Brent reside in Sharpsburg GA with their youngest daughter, who will soon graduate from high school (2016) and join her sisters in attending college and pursuing careers.


Dan DeGood is the son of an Eighth Air Force B-24 pilot who flew thirty missions with the 453rd Bomb Group / 924th Bomb Squadron.

He chaired the first “Bombs Away Sporting Clays Shoot” fundraiser which raised $19,000 and is the Chair for the 2018 “Bombs Away Sporting Clays Shoot. He also serves the Mighty 8th AF Museum as a volunteer doing the Mission and full tours.

He served as the Senior Vice President of Prudential financial in charge of Institutional Business Development. Responsible for Sales and Marketing-Increased revenues from $60M of new business revenue to $650M in 4-years while maintaining profit margins of 12%. A member of the Institutional Business Senior Leadership Team Responsible for monthly review of financial performance for 5 Operating entities.

Mr. DeGood is retired and has served the community as the Landings Association Board of Directors-Finance Committee 3-years; Forest City Gun Club Former Treasurer and Board Member developing their first budget for operating expenses; Board liaison to Capital Asset Committee; United Way of Coastal Georgia-Finance Committee Mediation Center-Active civil and domestic mediator; Former SCORE mentor-small business start-ups-providing advice on developing financial plans and marketing plans and has taught a monthly Finance course at Ft. Stewart for two years.

Dr. Harry Friedman spent time in both the US Army Reserve and US Navy Reserve, retiring as Captain. He has been published in many publications, including co-authoring “Memphis Belle-Dispelling the Myths.”

Harry is also trained in neurosurgery, with internships and residencies at University of Louisville and Duke University.

He is a board member and past president of the Memphis Belle Memorial Association, Inc, member of the B-17 Owners Cooperative, board member of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, an advisor to the National Museum of the United States Air Force and reached the rank of Eagle Scout.

He currently lives in Memphis, TN.

Ed Hawie has been practicing corporate law since 1962, specializing in federal and state securities laws, corporate acquisitions and joint ventures both in the United States and in Latin America.

Ed holds a BS degree in Economics from the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce at the University of Pennsylvania and graduated magna cum laude from the Boston University School of Law.

Ed began his legal career as an associate at Shearman & Sterling in New York City in 1962. He joined King & Spalding in Atlanta, Georgia in 1968 as an associate and served as a partner from 1970 until his retirement as a senior partner in that firm in 2000.

Since 2000, Ed has continued to be active in both corporate law matters and in various non-profit organizations.

Ed and his wife Sally live on St. Simons Island, GA

Deborah Lindsay brings a life-long interest in military history to the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force. Her studies of World War I and II have taken her around the world, including all major battlefields and concentration camps. She authored Behind Barbed Wire: A History of Concentration Camps, and is currently writing, Concentration Camps: A Guide to the Official Nazi Camps.

Deborah is a member of several organizations including the Atlanta History Center, Atlanta World War II Round Table, Atlanta Civil War Round Table, the Winston Churchill Society of Georgia, the National D-Day Memorial, and the National World War I Museum. She has served as a trustee on the boards of the National World War II Museum, The Center for Civil War History, and the Museum of History and Holocaust Education.

Deborah currently resides in Kennesaw, GA.

Scott W. Loehr is a third generation Floridian, having been born and raised in Fort Lauderdale.  He earned a B.A. in History from Florida State University and an M.A. in History, with concentrations in Historic Preservation and Museum Studies, from Colorado State University.

In his more than thirty-eight years in the cultural-resources management profession, Scott has held leadership positions with the Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex (Fayetteville, NC), the Augusta (GA) Museum of History, the Newport (RI) Historical Society and the Delaware Historical Society.

He is a past grants reviewer and evaluator with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, as well as a Museum Assessment Program assessor.  Scott has served on numerous non-profit boards, particularly state museum associations.  He is a co-editor and author of local history books.

Scott and his wife Deborah reside in Savannah, Georgia.

Governing Board

Richard “Sandy” Alderson is the son of a World War II Eighth Air Force pilot. Mr. Alderson has spent four decades in Major League Baseball, beginning in 1981 as General Consul and soon thereafter Vice President, Baseball Operations, with the Oakland Athletics. He was the architect of the A’s teams that won three consecutive American League pennants from 1988 – 1990 and won the World Series in 1989.

Mr. Alderson served as Major League Baseball’s Executive Vice President for Baseball Operations from 1998 – 2005, before returning to the front office to lead the San Diego Padres for four years. He became the New York Mets’ twelfth General Manager in 2010, stepping down in 2018. Mr. Alderson’s hiatus from baseball was brief, as he rejoined the Mets organization in November 2020 as its President.

Mr. Alderson is a decorated Marine Infantry Officer, with a tour of duty in Vietnam. His many awards include the 2015 Baseball America Executive of the Year; 2018 Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame inductee; Lifetime Achievement Award from the Vietnam Veterans Association; and a Doctor of Humane Letters honorary degree from Dartmouth College.

Mr. Alderson is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the Harvard School of Law. He and his wife, Linda, have two children and six grandchildren.

Gus Bell joins the Board of Trustees of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force with decades of dedicated service to organizations around Coastal Georgia. He graduated from The Citadel in 1959 and received his Masters from the University of Kentucky in 1961. He joined the civil engineering and architectural firm Hussey and Gay in 1966 and in 1969 the name was changed to Hussey, Gay and Bell. In 1963 to 1965 Gus worked with the United States Corp of Engineers in charge of overview of Barkley Dam in Western Kentucky and Ft, Stewart design and construction overview in 1964 to 1966.

Gus spent over 50 years as an employee and is now an Emeritus Chairman of the Board. He is currently on the board of the First Presbyterian Church of Savannah, Sun Trust Bank of Savannah, Tau Beta Pi Society, and Mercer University School of Medicine of Savannah.

Gus lives in Savannah with his wife, Janice Bell.

Robert T. “Bob” Buck was raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; He earned a B.A. in Economics from Allegheny College. Mr. Buck was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant from Air Force R.O.T.C.  He received his pilot’s wings at Goodfellow Air Force Base, training in B-25s.  Including training, and flying T-29s, Mr. Buck accumulated some two thousand hours of flying time.

Following three years in the Air Force, Mr. Buck began a career in the steel industry. He served as Senior Vice President with LTV Steel Corporation for eleven years as well as Chairman of the Auto Steel Partnership of the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI), a group of all US and Canadian steel producers to the automotive industry. While with AISI, Mr. Buck oversaw the expansion of that group to include steel companies around the world, increasing the participants to thirty-six and working with the International Iron and Steel Institute (IISI), in Brussels, Belgium.

Mr. Buck and his wife, Sheila, retired to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. They have four children, thirteen grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Mr. Buck has been a docent at the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force for more than ten years. Mr. Buck has served as President and Secretary of the Board of the Birthplace Chapter (Savannah) of the Eighth Air Force Historical Society. He is currently serving his third term as the organization’s Treasurer.


Mrs. Harper, a Savannah native, is employed by IQVIA Biotech as an Operational Strategist. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from Furman University and an MBA from the University of South Carolina. In addition to serving as a past co-chair of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force’s Legacy Ball and the MG Wick Searcy Memorial Clay Shoot, Mrs. Harper volunteers for a number of Savannah area not-for-profit organizations. These include the Savannah Tree Foundation, the March of Dimes, Telfair Museums, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the Historic Savannah Foundation. She is a member of the Metropolitan Rotary Club and the Downtown Garden Club. Mrs. Harper was named the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Woman of the Year in 2016.

Peter Hoffman is Director of Military and Local Government Affairs at Georgia Southern University, Armstrong Campus in Savannah, GA. Before assuming this position, he was the Director of the Armstrong Liberty Center, a campus that focused on providing educational opportunities to military affiliated students.



Prior to joining Armstrong, Mr. Hoffman spent 30 years in the US Army, retiring as a Colonel. As an Artilleryman he served multiple tours in the 82nd Airborne Division and the 3rd Infantry Division. He also served in various diplomatic capacities during his career, to include attaché duty at embassies in Russia, Bulgaria, and Nigeria. He served on the US Military Delegation to NATO and with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, performing arms control duties in Russia, Ukraine and throughout Eastern Europe. During Operation Iraqi Freedom, he commanded a joint task force that collected and safeguarded nuclear material and radiological sources.


Mr. Hoffman earned a BA in Political Science from North Georgia College and a Master’s in Public Administration from Cornell University. He attended the Marshall Center for Post Graduate Study in Russian and Eurasian Studies and speaks Russian.

Todd H. Martin is a Principal at M3 Advisors and Martin Financial Group. He is primarily responsible for helping clients preserve their wealth and create income distribution strategies to meet their long term needs and goals. Todd is a Savannah, GA native. He attended the University of Georgia where he earned a BBA in Risk Management and Insurance.

Mr. Martin is the son of Gean Martin, a prior Chairman of the Board for the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force who retired as a Captain in the Air Force. Todd is very passionate about the United States Military and continuing his family’s involvement in the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum.

Todd is married to Lauren Owens Martin. Todd and Lauren have two small children, Hunter (7) and Haley (4).

Robert “Sandy” Miller is a native of Savannah who holds a BS in Civil Engineering from The Citadel.

In 1966, Sandy joined the 117th TAC Control Squadron and later served as Commander.  He retired as a Lt. Colonel after twenty-four years of service.  He gained his early work experience as an engineer with B. F. Diamond Construction Company, Sayler Marine Construction and Savannah Iron and Fence—where he served as President from 1980-1991 when the company was sold.

Sandy started American Building Systems in 1992 with Jim Turner of J.T. Turner Construction, and served as Project Manager on the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force building.  He also operated American Building Systems as an independent company and built the 8th Air Force Chapel.

He retired in 2009, but has been very active in community involvement, including past President of the Rotary Club of Savannah, past Commodore of the Savannah Yacht Club, past President of the St. Andrews Society and the Savannah Scottish Games.  He is also a former Board member of Savannah Electric and Power Company.

Sandy has been married for 33 years to Kit Kennedy Miller.


Rick Perry served as the fourteenth United States Secretary of Energy from March 2017 to December 2019. As Secretary, he was responsible for successfully executing President Donald J. Trump’s energy agenda and the expansive mission of the Department of Energy (DOE), including maintaining the safety and security of the nation’s nuclear arsenal, protecting the electric grid from cyber threats, ensuring access to reliable and affordable energy, overseeing scientific research and development, and promoting the development and export of American technology and energy all over the world. Under his leadership, the nation ushered in a historic energy era, becoming the number one producer of oil and gas in the world, a world leader in the production and generation of renewable energy, and the dominant global force in Supercomputing, Quantum Computing and Artificial Intelligence.

Prior to joining the Trump Administration, Perry served as the 47th Governor of Texas from 2000-2015. As the longest serving governor of the Lone Star State, he championed conservative pro-growth principles that made Texas the world’s 12th largest economy and the economic envy of America. During his time in Austin, Governor Perry also implemented transformative reforms in the areas of security, criminal justice reform, energy, education, healthcare and the economy.

As Chief Executive both as Governor of Texas and Secretary of Energy, Perry understood that the success of government is only as strong as its partnerships with the private sector. He advocated for smart regulatory reforms and strong public-private partnerships, empowering industry rather that creating more bureaucratic barriers. He started the Texas Enterprise Fund which lured hundreds of hundreds of millions of dollars in private sector business and jobs to Texas. At DOE, he appointed the first ever Chief Commercialization Officer who was tasked with bridging the gap between the world-class R&D at the Department’s 17 National Laboratories and commercialization in the private sector.

Rick Perry is a veteran of the United States Air Force, where he flew a C-130 tactical airlift aircraft in Europe and the Middle East. Throughout his career, he has been deeply involved in supporting both the active duty and veteran community, most recently as an advocate for using the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to deliver precision health care to warriors suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and other conditions.

Perry earned distinction early in his life as an Eagle Scout. He was one of the first in his family to go to college, earning a degree in Animal Science from Texas A&M University, where he was a member of the Corps of Cadets and a Yell Leader. He is a lifetime member of both the NRA and American Legion Post #75.

Perry married his childhood sweetheart, Anita, in 1982. They have two children, two beautiful granddaughters, and a grandson who was born on the 4th of July in 2019.

Maj. Gen. Jeff Phillips has been executive director of the Reserve Officers Association since December 8, 2014. With more than 50,000 members, Washington-based ROA is a congressionally chartered corporation promoting the development and execution of sound military policy for the U.S., with a unique focus on the nation’s reserve forces.

Previously, Maj. Gen. Phillips formed and directed the federal sales division for Smiths Medical, a medical device manufacturer. His federal service includes civilian appointments as deputy assistant secretary for public affairs, acting assistant secretary for public and intergovernmental affairs, and White House liaison in the Department of Veterans Affairs under President George W. Bush; and in the Congress as communications director and subcommittee staff director in the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.

Now retired from the Army, Major General Phillips last served as the deputy commanding general (U.S. Army Reserve) of the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command at Fort Eustis, VA. In this part-time position, he was responsible for ensuring that the Army Reserve’s requirements and capabilities were reflected in Army training and training doctrine. From 2011 to 2013, he served as assistant deputy chief of staff G1, the Army Staff section responsible for human resources. From 2009 until 2011, he was deputy commanding general (rear) of the 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Stewart, GA.

Maj. Gen. Phillips was commissioned in the Regular Army as a second lieutenant of armor in 1979. His has served in Afghanistan, the Balkans, Egypt, Honduras, Israel, Iraq, and Germany, as well as the U.S.  He commanded an M-1 Abrams tank company in the 2nd Armored Division. In nearly 37 years on active and reserve duty, he served in operational, communications, and logistic staff positions from battalion through Army levels. His decorations include the Army Distinguished Service Medal, two Legions of Merit, two Bronze Star Medals and the Army Parachutist Badge.  He shares in the 1988 Nobel Peace Prize, awarded to the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization while he served with them in the Middle East.

Maj. Gen. Phillips holds a master of strategic studies degree from the U.S. Army War College, a master of arts degree in curriculum and instruction from The University of Texas at Austin, and a bachelor of arts degree in journalistic studies from the University of Massachusetts.


Rep. Earl (Buddy) Carter

William L. (Bill) Cathcart, Ph.D.
Mrs. Yvonne Brusselmans-Daley

Mr. Archie Davis

Mr. Robert H. Demere, Jr.

Mr. Keith Ferris

Mr. Robert S. Jepson, Jr.

Mr. Al Kennickell 

Dr. Donald (Don) Miller, Ph.D.

Mr. John Telgener

Col. Gerald (Gerry) Von Bargen, USAF, Ret.

Former Chairmen of the Board


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