Board of Directors and Staff

Kenneth Eward, president

Eward teaches at American Military University and was educated at Kenyon College, Cambridge University and Columbia University. He has had a lifelong interest in aviation history. Eward has consulted for a number of museums throughout the country and around the world, including the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, Boston Museum of Science and American Museum of Natural History in New York. Eward's work has appeared in National Geographic, Scientific American, LIFE magazine, TIME and other publications. He is currently working on a history of the 1965 Central Highlands campaign of the Vietnam War with coauthor Dr. Paul Harris.

Dr. Thomas Goetz, historian and acting secretary

Goetz is an associate professor at American Military University, where he specializes in 20th century military history. He holds a doctorate from the Graduate School of the City University of New York and is a recipient of the Ramsey Chair in Naval Aviation History from the National Air & Space Museum at the Smithsonian. His written work includes Freedom’s Shield: The National Guard and Homeland Defense, a book commissioned by the National Guard. Dr. Goetz's fascination with aviation dates back to his childhood days of building scale model aircraft, a hobby introduced by his father, who worked as a Marine Corps aircraft mechanic.     

Dr. Paul Harris, consulting historian

Harris is a senior lecturer at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst—the British West Point—where he has taught in the Department of War Studies for more than thirty years. He has published extensively in the field of 20th century military history, having written on the early history of armored warfare, the First World War and the War in Vietnam. Harris' work is widely acclaimed and a 2008 book garnered him the prestigious Templer Prize and Medal, presented by the Duke of Kent. His latest book, Vietnam's High Ground: Armed Struggle for the Central Highlands 1954-1965 (University Press of Kansas, 2016), discusses the advent of large scale use of the helicopter in combat, which established a pattern that would shape the outcome of the war and indeed military helicopter operations to the present day.  

James Ottman, treasurer

Ottman served as a helicopter pilot in the 1st Cavalry Division of the US Army in Vietnam. His introduction to combat came in 1968 in the aftermath of Operation Delaware, a time of particularly intense fighting for 1st Cavalry troopers. Ottman is an eyewitness to the increasingly larger part played by the helicopter in modern warfare—as a weapon, but also as a saver of lives in its role as a medevac. It is in the latter role that Ottman flew many of his missions. Ottman singles out the UH-1 "Huey" for particular mention amongst all the helicopters used in Vietnam by the US Army: "The Huey endeared itself to nearly all the troops 'in country.' Hueys and their crews provided a lifeline to soldiers in the bush, delivering critical supplies and evacuating the injured for medical treatment. It can be said of virtually all soldiers fighting in Vietnam that if they didn't fly a Huey, they flew in a Huey."   

Past Board Members

Steven Bookout

Dr. Haruhiko Itagaki

John Lockwood