Marcelite Jordan Harris, the United States Air Force first African American female general was born on January 16, 1943 in Houston, Texas. General Harris received her B.A. degree from Spelman College in 1964. She began her distinguished military career in 1965 when she was commissioned through Officer Training School at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. She also has a B.S. from the University of Maryland University College. Harris was a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority. General Harris also was the first female maintenance officers, one of two of the first female officers in a commanding position at the Air Force Academy , and the first female Director of Maintenance for the Air Force. She served in the Vietnam war and was honored with many awards including the Bronze Star, the Vietnam Service Medal and the Presidential Unit Citation. She was the highest ranking woman in the U.S. Air Force before she retired in 1997. General Harris died on September 7, 2018 at age 75 and was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
Words That Matter
General Marcelite Jordan Harris
“Always know that you are always preparing yourself. You are preparing yourself by being here. You’re living your future and preparing for the future yet to come.”