Written by: Jessica Behnham
Ron Milam is an associate professor of history and a Vietnam veteran who is involved
with the Vietnam Center and Archive at Texas Tech. View his profile in our online
Ron Milam, associate professor of history, has been appointed to serve as a member
of the board of directors of the David Westphall Veterans Foundation
Milam, a Vietnam veteran who is involved with the Vietnam Center and Archive at Texas
Tech, was appointed to the board in October.
The David Westphall Veterans Foundation is the founding organization responsible
for the creation of the Vietnam Veterans National Memorial located near Angel Fire,
Milam was asked to serve on the board of directors for the memorial after serving
as the keynote speaker at the Memorial Day services held at the memorial.
“I was very honored,” Milam said. “I spend a lot of time there, and I have another
life there so to speak, so Angel Fire means a lot to us because of the memorial.”
Milam and his wife have been visiting Angel Fire for more than 25 years. He said
they always noticed the sign about the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, but up until about
10 years ago they had not taken the time to visit it.
He said that after seeing the memorial, he fell in love with it, and he and his wife
spoke with the founder and ended up purchasing a home in Angel Fire.
Milam said he hopes to develop a relationship between the Texas Tech Vietnam Center
and the memorial. The memorial offers an extensive set of archives, but he said
the foundation does not have the ability to preserve the artifacts.
Texas Tech can offer the memorial a place to preserve those artifacts, while the
memorial can provide the university access to its wealth of knowledge.
“Getting a job at Texas Tech was a wonderful thing,” Milam said. “I am very fortunate
to be hired by Texas Tech, and it is a real honor to help create a relationship between
the memorial and the university.”
Steve Maxner, director of The Vietnam Center at Texas Tech, said the memorial is
visited by tens of thousands of visitors each year.
“Through his work on the board, Ron will have an impact on the lives of countless
veterans and their families as they visit this very special memorial,” Maxner said.
The memorial is the first Vietnam Veterans memorial built in the United States and
was formally dedicated in 1971.
Milam also serves on the Vietnam Center Advisory Board and has donated his personal
collection of Vietnam War memorabilia to the Vietnam Archive. He is interim director
for the Center and Archive for War and Diplomacy in the Post-Vietnam War Era.