Indiana National Guard promotes first African-American to general

Indiana National Guard, Joint Force Headquarters
Story by Sgt. 1st Class Aaron Tinsley

Date: 07.13.2013
Posted: 07.13.2013 16:08
News ID: 110167
Indiana National Guard promotes first African-American to general

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana National Guard promoted Col. Wayne Black to the rank of brigadier general at the Indiana War Memorial Saturday, July 13.

Black provides the Indiana National Guard with nearly 30 combined years of active and National Guard leader experience. He accepted the position of Indiana’s Army assistant adjutant general. Black is Indiana’s first African-American brigadier general.

“I am proud and honored to earn the rank of general,” said Black. “I hope to assist and encourage other minorities and all of the Indiana National Guard soldiers and airmen.”

Black will assist Maj. Gen. R. Martin Umbarger to lead Indiana’s National Guard of almost 14,000 service members.

“While Black represents the seven core Army values, his sense of duty, loyalty and selfless service helped him achieve promotion to a general officer. … One of only seven others in the Indiana National Guard,” said Umbarger.

Black’s family and friends celebrated the historic event with him.

“I am proud to be a part of it. He is a special kind of guy,” said Alonzo Jefferson, Black’s brother-in-law of more than 20 years who flew in from Florida to attend. “I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”