William E. Atkinson


William E. Atkinson

Colonel William Earl Atkinson was born in Greenville, North Carolina. While attending North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, North Carolina, he was drafted into the U.S. Army at the age of 19. He progressed through the ranks from Private E1 to Sergeant E5 during his tour in Vietnam 1969. He attended Infantry Officer Candidate School at Fort Benning, Georgia, and was commissioned an Infantry Officer in 1972. His first duty assignment was as Detachment Executive Officer, 2d Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group (SFG) (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina. | His subsequent duty assignments include: Company Executive Officer, Service Company, 5th SFG, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Heavy Mortar Platoon Leader and Company Commander, Company B, 1st Infantry Battalion, Camp Casey, Korea; Battalion S-3, 2d Battalion, 31st Infantry, Fort Ord, California; Company Commander, Headquarters & Headquarters Company (HHC), 1st Brigade, 7th Infantry Division, Fort Ord, California; Assistant Brigade S-3, 1st Brigade, 7th Division, Fort Ord, California; Troop Commander, Special Forces Operational Detachment (SFOD), Delta Force (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina; S-3, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Hunter Army Air Field, Georgia; Special Operations Staff Officer, U.S. Army Special Operations Agency, Headquarters, Department of the Army (HeadquartersDA), Washington, D.C.; Assistant Executive Officer, Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans, HeadquartersDA, Washington, D.C.; Battalion Commander, 3d Battalion, 7th SFG (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina; G-3, U.S. Army Special Operation Integration Command, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Assistant Executive Officer to the Under Secretary of the Army, Washington, D.C.; Operations Officer, Joint Operations Division (Pacific), U.S. Army Element, J3/Joint, Pentagon, Washington, D.C.; Deputy Director for Antiterrorism, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low-Intensity Conflict, Washington, D.C. | Colonel Atkinson's military education and training includes: Infantry Officer Basic and Advanced Courses; Special Forces Qualification Course; Static Line Jump Master; Ranger Course; Free-fall Parachutist and Jumpmaster; Command and General Staff College; and the united States Army War College. He has a Bachelor Degree from Troy State University, Alabama, and a Masters Degree in Public Administration from Shippensburg University, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania. | Colonel Atkinson's awards include: the Bronze Star; Meritorious Service Medal w/5 Oak Leaf Clusters; Army Commendation Medal; Vietnam Service; Vietnam Campaign, Combat Infantryman Badge; Master Parachutist Badge; Ranger Tab; Special Forces Tab; Army Staff Identification Badge and the Joint Staff Badge.

Additional Information

Graduated From
Fort Benning, Georgia
Key Assignment
Company Executive Officer, Service Company, 5th SFG, Fort Bragg, North Carolina
Highest Award
Bronze Star Medal
Year Inducted
Branch Of Service

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