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Saturday, 20 April 2013

BLACK SOCIAL HISTORY : MAJOR GENERAL FRANK E. BATTS TWO STAR AFRICAN AMERICAN UNITED STATES ARMY GENERAL: GOES INTO THE " HALL OF BLACK GENIUS "















The commander of the Virginia National Guard’s Fort Belvoir-based 29th Infantry Division was promoted to major general in a ceremony held Aug. 24 at Fort Pickett. Celestine Batts officially promoted her husband, Frank E. Batts, Sr., to major general in front of a large group of family as well as officers and senior noncommissioned officers from the 29th and the Virginia Army National Guard.

“They got it right when the promoted Frank Batts,” said Maj. Gen. Daniel E. Long, Jr., the Adjutant General of Virginia. “I have known him for a long time, and he has the character and the traits I like in a leader: he cares about people, he is committed to excellence and you trust him.”

Batts became the 20th commanding general of the 29th when he assumed command Jan. 5 from Maj. Gen. Grant Hayden. He is the first African-American Soldier to command the 29th Infantry Division and the first to achieve the rank of major general in the Virginia Army National Guard.

“I am totally in awe of the blessings and responsibilities that have been bestowed upon me,” Batts said. “It is not often that a Soldier has the opportunity to serve at the general officer level and rarer still to have the opportunity to serve as a major general in command of an historic and storied division like the 29th Infantry Division.”

Batts thanked his parents and his seven brothers and sisters, the educators who helped his academic career from first grade through his masters degree, the military role models who helped guide his Army career and finally his family.