Sept. 5, 2013 / Sarasota, Fla. — U.S.
Army retired Maj. Gen. Mark Hamilton will be the special guest speaker during
the Church of the Redeemer's Sept. 22 Rector’s Class, held at
10:15 a.m., between the 9 and 11 a.m. services. Hamilton, who is from St.
Petersburg, Fla., and was featured on ABC Evening News in the 1990s as a
"Person of the Week" for his negotiation with Somalian warlords, will
speak about his life as a Christian. The public is warmly invited to attend.
A graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Hamilton retired from the military after serving 31 years. During his career, he earned the Army’s highest peacetime award, the Distinguished Service Medal, and the Armed Forces' highest peacetime award, the Joint Distinguished Service Medal. After his service in the military, which included serving in Vietnam, he was named the president of the Alaska Statewide University System, and held that position for 12 years.
Hamilton's considerable military highlights include being the commander for the U.S. military in El Salvador, where he was largely responsible for negotiating an end to the country's 12-year civil war. In Somalia, his negotiations with warlords resulted in a window of tranquility that enabled the removal of the U.S. 10th Division. In Brussels, he advised the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe on NATO planning in the former republic of Yugoslavia.
As president of the Alaskan college system from 1998 to 2010, Hamilton created scholarships intended to persuade the state's brightest high school graduates to remain in-state. The program provides students who are in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating class with scholarships of $10,800 over four years. The program, which received national attention, has been a major success.
Hamilton holds a Masters degree from Florida State University (English literature), and is a graduate of the Armed Forces Staff College in Virginia, and the U.S. Army War College in Pennsylvania. He is a published poet.
The Church of the Redeemer is located in the heart of downtown Sarasota, at 222 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota. For more information, visit redeemersarasota.org or call 941-955-4263.