1949 – 

Lieutenant Colonel William M. Davis

Rank and Branch of Military

Lieutenant Colonel, Army

Years of Service


Locations of Training, Deployment, and Service

Fort Jackson, South Carolina; Wiesbaden, Germany; Frankfurt, Germany; Iraq; The Pentagon

Military Schools Attended

Basic training at at Fort Jackson, South Carolina

Wartime Theaters of Assignment and Major Battles

William M. Davis enlisted in the US Army in May 1972, reporting for active duty at Fort Jackson South Carolina on 7 July 1972. After eight grueling weeks of basic training in the July and August heat and humidity of South Carolina, he arrived at Fort Sill Oklahoma for 6 months of even more intensive training at the Field Artillery Officer Candidate School. As graduation and commissioning was approaching, he was informed that he would be going to Vietnam as a Forward Observer. This entailed being positioned at the front line of forces to direct artillery fire on enemy soldiers. Life expectancy of these soldiers ranged from 30 seconds to 20 minutes in combat. Luckily, President Nixon declared the war over and Second Lieutenant Davis was sent to another exotic location: Fort Jackson S.C. There he served as a Basic Training Officer and Battalion Adjutant. In 1975, First Lieutenant Davis reported to a Lance Missile unit in Wiesbaden Germany where as a Platoon Leader, he was responsible for not only the care and wellbeing of 45 soldiers, but also the care and wellbeing of the unit’s nuclear weapons. Captain Davis completed the Officer Advanced Course and was assigned to the 24th Infantry Division in Fort Stewart Georgia. Captain Davis was selected to attend the Gunnery Instructors Course prior to arriving at the new assignment where he established the Fort Stewart School of Fire. He later was selected for Battery Command, leading the Battery to earn “Best Battery” designation during proficiency evaluations. This lead to his selection and continuation as a Battalion Operations Officer as a Captain even though more senior officers were available. Following this successful tour of duty, Captain Davis was assigned as an Assistant Professor of Military Science, at the University of Kentucky responsible for presenting instruction on United States Defense strategy and tactics as well as recruiting qualified students for the Advanced Reserve Officer Training Corps program. He was also responsible for instruction and recruiting at three other area universities and colleges. He successfully met the goals of this tour and was presented a Kentucky Colonel commission in appreciation for recruiting many cadets for the Kentucky Army National Guard.  

Major Davis was then assigned to V Corps Headquarters in Frankfurt Germany as a Fire Support Coordinator. He was at the tip of the Corps spear as the Fire Support Coordinator in the Tactical Operations Center during the large-scale NATO Return of Forces to Germany (REFORGER), an exercise designed to enhance the military capabilities of the U.S. and allied forces and to reassure the NATO participants of the firm U.S. commitment to the alliance.
Subsequently, Major Davis was selected as the Operations Officer of a cannon artillery battalion where he coordinated and directed all operational aspects of this 550+ member, high-performance organization, in intense, geographically diverse environments, including combat operations during the Persian Gulf War. Upon returning to Germany, he was selected as the Battalion Commander and directed the first downsizing operation of a Battalion-sized organization in the regional area, successfully safeguarding government resources: buildings, equipment and inventory, as well as transitioning soldiers and their family members to other assignments. Major Davis returned to the US and was assigned as a Plans Officer at the U.S. Army Operational Test and Evaluation Command (OPTEC), an organization with the congressional mandate to provide operational tests and evaluations of all major Army acquisition efforts. He was responsible for long-range planning, analysis of future requirements, and ensuring all required resources were programmed for the projected workload and documented in the Army’s Long-Range Research Development and Acquisition Plan. A notable achievement was his negotiating an unprecedented operational, administrative and logistical support agreement in support of a subordinate organization during a very turbulent Army-wide downsizing period ensuring the continued effectiveness and mission capability of the command. 

Lieutenant Colonel Davis was then selected as an Inspector General at the Department of Army level. In this highly selective role, he conducted thorough investigations, having congressional and Army senior leader interest, into complex allegations of impropriety against senior officials, protecting the integrity of the organization and the rights of the accused individuals. He coordinated and provided oversight of over 225 inspector general investigations and inquiries conducted at lower echelons. His efforts resulted in the identification of both individual and systemic problems, organizational performance trends, and providing a direct response to public perceptions of alleged improprieties. His achievements in these efforts led to his selection as a faculty member and doctrine developer at the U.S. Army Inspector General School. He was the primary instructor and the U.S. Army Inspector General School subject matter expert for the Assistance and Investigations functions, Whistleblower Reprisal Investigations, and Sexual Harassment. He authored doctrinal manuals and regulatory provisions governing the IG Assistance Function. He successfully served as a seminar leader, facilitator, and mentor for small group instruction in these topics and provided consultant services to field IGs of all services concerning Inspector General processes. He developed, coordinated, and implemented an investigations course for other Service IGs which was recognized as the premier investigations course for Inspectors General in the Department of Defense. 

Lieutenant Colonel Davis retired from Active Duty in July 1998.

Awards, Decorations, Badges, etc.

His awards include the Bronze Star, The Legion Of Merit, The Meritorious Service Medal, The Army Commendation Medal and The Army Achievement Medal

Relationship to the Daniel Haston Family

Descends through Jeremiah Haston, Daniel’s son

Name of Person Who Submitted this Information

Niece, Claire Aufrance

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