The next time you run into the president and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Madison, you might want to straighten your back and salute. Dr. Ruben L. Anthony Jr. is now a commander, an honorary title bestowed upon him by military leaders of Madison’s 115th Fighter Wing.
Anthony was selected from a competitive pool of local business leaders and movers and shakers in the Greater Madison area. The prestigious program offers members the opportunity to get to know local airmen and learn more about the 115th Fighter Wing. Among the new honorees includes Dane County Sheriff Kalvin Barrett, Tom Bakken, the Green Bay Packers assistant equipment manager, and several other leaders in the community.
The newly enlisted honorary commanders are paired with military unit commanders on base and serve a two-year term to develop lasting partnerships rooted in mutual understanding, respect and support. The program was also developed to allow local community and business leaders an opportunity to gain insight into the fighter wing’s mission and the overall Air Force way of life by obtaining hands-on experience through a close association with Air Force commanders and personnel.
The 115th Fighter Wing is a unit of the Wisconsin Air National Guard, which is stationed at Truax Field Air National Guard Base. If activated to federal service, the Wing is gained by the United States Air Force Air Combat Command.
The memorious ceremony was held on base on April 6 and included a tour and awards ceremony. The Honorary Commander Program was developed to allow local community and business leaders an opportunity to gain insight into the fighter wing’s mission and the overall Air Force way of life by obtaining hands-on experience through a close association with Air Force commanders and personnel.
“Unlike a large active-duty unit, if we don’t have community members who are familiar with our mission it can often go misunderstood,” said Col. Bart Van Roo, the 115th Fighter Wing commander and Dane County local for over 30 years. “My goal for this program is to familiarize you with what we do, promote a greater understanding of our involvement in the community and encourage you to share what you’ve learned with others.”
Designed to incorporate all aspects of the community, here is the full list of the 2022 Honorary Commanders:
• Curt Bronkhorst –
Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies & Professor at University of Wisconsin-Madison
• Dave Hamilton –
Vortex Optics family of founders
• Jim Holden –
Emeritus Professor of Medical Physics, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health
• Kalvin Barrett –
Dane County Sherriff
• Matt Hofeldt –
Owner of Middleton’s Capital Flight and Marshall’s Capital Speed
• Patrick Harrigan –
• Ruben Anthony –
Urban League of Greater Madison President and CEO
• Ted LeRoy –
Sales Director at Stoughton Trailers
• Tom Anderson & Laura Stekelberg –
Owners of Buck & Honey’s Restaurants
• Tom Bakken –
Green Bay Packers Assistant Equipment Manager
• Zak & Ryan Koga –
Brothers and owners of Madison’s Karben4 Brewing