Kenneth P. Davis
Colonel Kenneth P. Davis grew up in North Carolina and Georgia and graduated from Savannah High School and Oglethorpe University and Georgia State University in Atlanta. He was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Army Signal Corps upon graduation from OCS Class 25-69 at Ft. Benning on August 8, 1969. He then attended the Signal Officer Basic Course at Ft. Gordon, Georgia and graduated on the Commandant’s List in October 1969. His first duty station was as Assistant Protocol/Staff Officer in the Office of the Commandant at the US Army Southeastern Signal School where he served from October 1969 to June 1970. He was then assigned to the 12th Signal Group in Phu Bai, Vietnam as the Group Assistant S-4 where he was promoted to First Lieutenant, arriving in country on July 31, 1970. On November 1, 1970 he was assigned as the HQ Company Commander of the 12th Signal Group, Da Nang, Vietnam where he served until DEROS on June 12, 1971. During his tenure as commander, the company passed both an IG Inspection and a Command Maintenance Management Inspection.
Returning to the US, Davis entered the University of Virginia in the fall of 1971 to study American Diplomatic History. After three years at UVA, working on his dissertation, he became employed by the National Archives of the United States in Washington, DC. He completed his degree and was awarded the PhD in August 1975.
Additional Army assignments included—Individual Mobilization Augmentee (IMA), Prince George’s County, MD, Office of Emergency Preparedness; IMA, City of Alexandria, Virginia, Office of Emergency Preparedness; Adjutant, Deputy Commander and Commander for six yers, 161st IMA Detachment, Office of the Comptroller of the Army; IMA to Defense Communications Agency; Chief of Budget, Office of the Comptroller, 310th Theater Army Area Command, Ft. Belvoir, VA; Commander, (Drilling IMA), Operations/Plans Officer,of a unit of eight O-6 officers from all four military services, Office of Under Secretary of Defense for Policy; Comptroller, 311th Theater Signal Command, Ft. Meade, MD.
While a Federal civilian employee from 1971 to 2002, Davis moved from GS-7 to GS 15 as a Management Analyst Officer in the National Archives, the General Services Administration, and the Defense Logistics Agency. From 1985 to 1988 he held supervisory jobs in GSA at the GS-13 and GS-14 levels. From 1989 to 2002 he was the GS-15 Office Director of the Office of Management and Systems Support, National Defense Stockpile Center, Defense Logistics Agency, providing administrative support for a nation-wide program of maintaining strategic materials, valued at $6 billion. He received multiple honor and cash awards in his 30 years of civilian service and retired in 2002.
The training completed by Colonel Davis includes Infantry Officer Candidate School, Signal Officer Basic Course, Signal Officer Advanced Course, Reserve Component Infantry Qualification Course, Command and General Staff College, National War College (National Security Management Course), Defense Resource Management Course (Naval Postgraduate School), and Army War College. Other training includes Military Comptroller Course, Supply Management Officer Course, Adjutant General Orientation Course, Senior Transportation Officer Qualification Course, Finance Officer Qualification Course, Senior Officer Field Artillery Refresher Course; and Military Police Advanced Orientation Course.
Awards presented to Colonel Davis include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Joint Service Achievement Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with "X" Device, and Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal with five Oak Leaf Clusters, as well as Army Service Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Ribbon, RVN Campaign Medal, Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm Unit Citation, National Defense Service Medal, and Army Service Ribbon. Davis was also awarded the Department of Defense ID Badge. He was inducted into the OCS Hall of Fame in 1994. In 2020 he was selected as one of two recipients of the Army War College Outstanding Alumna Award part of only 53 that have been presented since 1997.
The unit he commanded, the 161st IMA Detachment, received one of only five Federal Special Recognition Certificates from the Public Employees Roundtable in their 1992 Public Service Excellence Awards Program for service to Department of the Army during Operation Desert Storm, the only Department of Defense Activity so recognized that year. COL Davis received a Medal as a member of the Winning Rifle Team, First Army Area, Small Unit/New Shooter Category in the Chief, Army Reserve/National Rifle Association Postal Matches. He has been active in OCS Chapter One in Washington. DC.
In addition to Army and Federal civilian service, Davis has volunteered for over 900 hours with the USO and has held extensive leadership roles at all levels of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) for over 65 years, including numerous Jamboree and National Order of the Arrow Conference staffs, directing many advanced leadership “Wood Badge” courses and National Camp Schools, serving as a Scoutmaster, District Commissioner and serving on local council and regional boards as well as national council member at large. He holds the local Silver Beaver, regional Silver Antelope and national Order of the Arrow Distinguished Service Awards. In 1992 he received the national Silver Buffalo Award in the class that included General Colin Powell and Astronaut James Lovell. Davis has written two histories for the BSA: The Brotherhood of Cheerful Service, A History of the Order of the Arrow (2015) and A History of Wood Badge in the United States (2018).
Davis is active in the St. John’s United Methodist Church of Springfield, Virginia and served on the Oglethorpe University President’s Advisory Council from 2014 to 2017. From his Alma Mater, he received “The Spirit of Oglethorpe” Award from the alumni association in 2015. He has reviewed books for the Army Historical Foundation book prizes annually since 2012. In 2020 Davis became as a Life Member of the 1814 Society of the Army Historical Foundation and served as a volunteer at the new National Museum of the US Army at Ft. Belvoir, Virginia. He has also been a member of the Board of Directors of the Philmont Staff Association, a 501(c)(3) charity to support the Scout ranch in New Mexico since 2005 and has written the groups’ history: Born at the Confluence, A History of the Philmont Staff Association (2010)
Davis was widowed from this college classmate, Diane Leonard, in 1996 and has two grown children. Carol Davis Wellen lives in Frederick, MD where she is an elementary school librarian and media specialist. Son Jared Davis is a Staff Sergeant in the Army as a 17C cyber specialist stationed at Ft. Meade, MD.