News: Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Talley inducted into LSU Hall of Honor
Story by Maj. Meritt Phillips
BATON ROUGE – Lt. Gen. Jeffrey W. Talley, chief of Army Reserve, was inducted into the Military Hall of Honor on Saturday, November 23, during the weekend-long LSU Salutes celebration co-sponsored by Louisiana State University and Cadets of the Ole War Skule.
The inductees were recognized at the annual commandant’s luncheon, a medal ceremony in the student union, and at center field during pregame activities for the LSU vs. Texas A&M football game at Tiger Stadium.
Talley, one of twelve alumni recognized, was added to the roles of history that began 150 years ago when the institution opened under Superintendent and Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman. Then called the Louisiana State Seminary of Learning and Military Academy and nicknamed the “Ole War Skule,” the university, endured two closings during the Civil War and was ultimately lost as a result of fire in 1869. After relocating from Pineville to Baton Rouge and taking on the name Louisiana State University, the institution continued to build on its military tradition. During World War II, LSU boasted more officers on active duty than any other institution in the nation other than the military academies.
“Having the opportunity to stroll once again on campus the first thing I noticed was the Troy Middleton Library” said Talley “where I first met my soon to be girlfriend and now wife Linda, whom I proposed to on the shores of LSU lake.”
“When you walk down the magnificent line of live oak trees of Memorial Oak Grove dedicated to our fallen and missing, it is hard for me to believe I was a student here more than thirty years ago.” Talley shared, referencing the universities visible remembrance of the Soldiers who have proudly served in America’s armed forces and given their lives to preserve freedom.
Talley, a forestry major and member of the LSU Corps of Cadets, commissioned into the regular Army on the same day he received his undergraduate degree in December 1981. With 30 years of active and reserve service, Talley rose from the rank of cadet to the Chief of Army Reserve and commanding general of U.S. Army Reserve Command, the highest rank and position in the organization today. Commanding units from platoon to division-level, with duty in Korea, Kuwait, Iraq, and the United States, Talley has earned several awards; including the Army Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit Medal, three Bronze Star Medals, the USACE Silver De Fleury Medal, four Meritorious Service Medals, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, Parachutist and Air Assault Badges, Ranger Tab, and Army, Joint Staff and Office of the Secretary of Defense Identification Badges.
Talley encouraged the cadets from both LSU and Texas A&M attending the ceremonies to ensure they use their education and training to embrace the principles of competency, commitment and most importantly character. “Leadership is not associated with a rank or a title, it is about character” he said.
Prior to his return to active military service Talley served as President and CEO, co-founder and lead investor of Environmental Technology Solutions and served in multiple academic positions including an Adjunct Professor at The Johns Hopkins University, and as a tenured teaching and research faculty member at Southern Methodist University and the University of Notre Dame. He has served in design, consulting, and military positions involving hundreds of environmental and business projects throughout the United States and abroad.
In addition to his LSU education Talley earned a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and an Executive M.B.A. from the University of Oxford in England. He holds multiple master's degrees in strategic studies, environmental engineering and science, liberal arts (history and philosophy), religious studies, and is a graduate of the Army War College. He is also a registered Professional Engineer, a Board Certified Environmental Engineer in Environmental Sustainability, and a Diplomate, Water Resources Engineer.
Talley and his wife, Linda, have four grown children and two dogs and currently reside in Washington, D.C.
Other inductees to the 2013 Hall of Honor are retired Air Force Col. Ray Caldwell Dawson, of Baton Rouge; retired Air Force Col. Warren R. Hull Sr., of Baton Rouge; retired Army Lt. Col. John M. “Jack” Jolissaint Jr., of Baton Rouge; retired Navy/Naval Reserve Capt. William Bruce King, of Central, La.; Army Reserve Lt. Col. and state Rep. Nicholas J. “Nick” Lorusso, of New Orleans; retired Army Ernest W. “Butch” Lutz Jr., of Madison, Miss.; U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Eaton Stagg, Jr., of Shreveport, La.; the late Ford Edwards Stinson Sr., of Benton, La.; retired Col. Elwood C. Tircuit, of Baton Rouge; retired Col. George K. Todd Jr., of Burke, Va.; and the late Army Col. Warren N. Waggenspack.