General Frank Grass

General Frank J. Grass, former member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to take part in panel discussion at William Woods

“Global Security and Leadership Principles” panel to also include Maj. Gen. Stephen Danner, Adjutant General of the Missouri National Guard

Fulton, MO – Three days after the nation pauses to honor its veterans, William Woods University (WWU) will be hosting a panel discussion involving two of Missouri’s most distinguished and prominent military leaders. U.S. Army General (Retired) Frank J. Grass, former member of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Major General Stephen Danner, Adjutant General of the Missouri National Guard and recently-appointed member of the William Woods Board of Trustees, will facilitate the discussion entitled “Global Security and Leadership Principles.”

The event, which is free and open to the public, will take place at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, November 14, in Dulaney Auditorium on the WWU campus.

General Grass’ tenure in the Joint Chiefs of Staff was as the 27th Chief of the National Guard Bureau, where he served as military adviser to the President, Secretary of Defense and National Security Council of the United States, and was the Department of Defense’s official channel of communication to the Governors and State Adjutants General on all matters pertaining to the National Guard. He was responsible for ensuring that the more than 450,000 Army and Air National Guard personnel were accessible, capable and ready to protect the homeland and to provide combat resources to the Army and Air Force.

A Missouri native, General Grass served in a variety of command and staff positions as a traditional National Guard soldier in both the active guard and reserve program, and on active duty, during his career. His first general officer assignment was as Deputy Director of the Army National Guard in Arlington, Virginia, and he also served as Deputy Commander of the U.S. Northern Command and Vice Commander of the U.S. Element, North American Aerospace Defense Command (USELEMNORAD), helping lead the command to anticipate, prepare and respond to threats and aggression aimed at the United States. He retired from active duty on September 1, 2016, after 47 years as a soldier.

Also a Missouri native, Maj. Gen. Danner has served as Adjutant General of the Missouri National Guard since his appointment in 2009 by Governor Jay Nixon. During his career he has held numerous additional military assignments, including Deputy Chief of Staff, Commander of the 140thRegiment, Assistant Adjutant General, Command Judge Advocate in Balad, Iraq, and many more. Danner is the recipient of the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal (with two Bronze Service Stars), Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal and Army Achievement Medal, among others.

He was appointed to the William Woods University Board of Trustees on October 22 of this year.

“At William Woods, we pride ourselves in being a military-friendly university,” said Dr. Jahnae H. Barnett, president of William Woods University. “We are thrilled to bring Generals Grass and Danner to our campus during the week we remember and honor our nation’s veterans.”

In August, William Woods became the first-ever private university in Missouri to establish the prestigious Show-Me Guard Officer Leadership Development (GOLD) program on its campus, and just the fourth university overall in the state. Show-Me GOLD is a program that trains men and women to become commissioned officers in the Missouri Army National Guard.