GMC News

Former GMC President Major General Bill Acker named President Emeritus

(Brigadier General Curt Rauhut, Regimental Commander Jaylan Mobley, Major General Bill Acker, and LTG William B. Caldwell, IV)

During Georgia Military College’s (GMC) 2017 Alumni and Friends Weekend, GMC’s President, LTG William B. Caldwell IV, read a proclamation declaring former GMC President, Major General Bill Acker, a President Emeritus of the institution. This prestigious title recognizes General Acker’s years of work towards moving GMC to new heights.

“It was a wonderful honor,” said General Acker. “Georgia Military College really surprised me. I think everyone saw tears in my eyes. I didn’t expect to show that kind of emotion. I’m an old fighter pilot who has flown in combat. I really appreciate what they have done for me.”

General Acker graduated from Georgia Military College in 1950. In 1977, he was awarded the GMC Distinguished Alumnus award for his service to humanity and dedication to GMC. He served 33 distinguished years in the Air Force before coming back to his alma mater. He served as GMC’s 19th President from 1985 to 1992 when there was talk of closing the school due to financial problems and a decline in student enrollment. His job was to keep the school from going under.

“There were a lot of people who thought the school was closing, said General Acker. “I had a good staff that helped me to come up with some ideas on how to get some more money and keep the school going. We managed to keep it going.”

After he was denied a loan from a local bank to meet payroll, General Acker found another bank that was willing to help him. He later showed his appreciation by choosing that bank to manage nearly a million dollars in endowment funds they raised. He also fought hard to increase state funding for the school, added sixth and seventh grades to the prep school, added four new college campuses, resurrected the football team, implemented new technology in the classroom, and began providing scholarships to African American students to increase diversity. Through his hard work, General Acker was able to pay down some of GMC’s debt and turn the school’s finances around. General Acker says he’s very impressed with the work both General Peter Boylan and LTG William B. Caldwell, IV, have done to expand the school.

“It’s an amazing difference,” said General Acker. “General Boylan just built it up and then General Caldwell came in and took it up another level. General Caldwell is an amazing president and is exactly right for that job.”

The 87-year-old says if he writes to students in the future he no longer has to sign his name as GMC’s 19th President. He can now sign his name with pride as President Emeritus.