SUNY Canton’s Highest Ranking Military Alumnus Promoted

New York Guard commander Fergal Foley, a retired Army National Guard officer and 1980 SUNY Canton Alumnus, was recently promoted to the rank of Major General.

New York State Governor David A. Patterson recently presented General Foley with his second star, denoting his new rank. He is the highest-ranking military official known in SUNY Canton’s 101-year history.

 Fergal Foley, a 1980 SUNY Canton alumnus,  was recently promoted to Major General. Pictured is Rory Foley pinning the second star on his father’s uniform.

Fergal Foley, a 1980 SUNY Canton alumnus, was recently promoted to Major General. Pictured is Rory Foley pinning the second star on his father’s uniform.

“We take great pride in our students and alumni who serve in the armed forces,” said SUNY Canton President Joseph L. Kennedy. “General Foley has achieved new heights in his military career and he is well deserving of this promotion. We are extremely pleased with his success and for his involvement with his alma mater.”

Earlier this year, General Foley returned to SUNY Canton and presented his first-hand account of the events surrounding the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. He spoke to a full house at the College’s Kingston Theater and answered numerous questions following his presentation. General Foley served as the Department of Defense Chief of Staff and Acting Commander for the Joint Task Force “Operation World Trade Center” from Sept. 11 through Sept. 29, 2001, and was involved with coordinating response and relief efforts during the disaster.

“General Foley serves as a fantastic example of what our students can achieve by combining their military service with their SUNY Canton education,” said Associate Professor of Criminal Justice Robert L. Edwards, who is the founder of the college’s Veteran’s Association.

General Foley has served as a Director and Chief Operating Officer for American Defense Systems, Inc. He retired from the United States Army in October 2006 as a Brigadier General.

His key military assignments included serving as Executive Officer of the National Guard Regional Training Institute from 1996 to 1999.  He was later assigned as Deputy Brigade Commander from 1999 to 2003. In 2003, he was selected for Brigade Command in New York City and remained there until 2005. General Foley was later assigned as the Facility Manager for a National Guard Training Base until his retirement in October 2006.

He currently serves as Chairman of the Board for the Military Association of New York.  General Foley earned an Associate’s degree in Business Management from SUNY Canton, a Bachelor of Science degree and Master of Public Administration degree from Marist College, and a Master of Science degree from the U.S. Army War College.

“We’re grateful that General Foley recently returned to campus to share his experiences with our students, faculty, staff, and community members,” said Vice President of Advancement David M. Gerlach. “His leadership and accomplishments are truly an inspiration.”

SUNY Canton offers a wide variety of career-driven bachelor’s, associate, and certificate programs, as well as three master’s degrees in conjunction with SUNYIT, Utica. Most of SUNY Canton’s new four-year programs are designed so students can take them on-campus, online, or both. SUNY Canton OnLine features more than 100 courses online each semester. The College’s athletic teams belong to the NAIA’s Sunrise Conference, enabling students to compete in their respective sports for four years. Construction is now underway for the College’s new Convocation, Athletic, and Recreation Center.

Media inquiries should be directed to Gregory Kie, Media Relations Coordinator, or call 315/386-7528.

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