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05-04-2017

Clarkson University Army ROTC Chair Promoted to Lieutenant Colonel

Army Maj. Michael C. Athanasakis, professor of military science and chair of the Army ROTC department at Clarkson University, has been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel.

Army Maj. Michael C. Athanasakis, professor of military science and chair of the Army ROTC department at Clarkson University, has been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel. Above, Athanasakis' wife, Teanna, places his new shoulder boards, while their children and Col. Philip J. Ryan look on.A promotion ceremony took place May 2 on the Clarkson campus in front of the Golden Knight Battalion, University administrators, family and friends, with remarks by Col. Philip J. Ryan, Regimental Commander of the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne).

Athanasakis graduated from Jacksonville State University, Alabama as a distinguished military graduate and was commissioned as a second lieutenant into the Aviation Branch. A prior service U.S. Marine Corps Infantryman, his military education includes the aviation officer basic course, and the Marine Expeditionary Warfare School (CCC equivalent). His civilian education includes a bachelor of arts degree in political science and a master of arts in organizational communication from Murray State University.

Lt. Col. Michael C. AthanasakisPrior to his position at Clarkson, Athanasakis was the regiment operations officer, HQ, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne). He has participated as a leader in numerous combat deployments over the years, and served in Iraq for 15 months in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

He was attack platoon leader and support platoon leader in 1st Battalion, 501st Aviation Regiment (Attack) in Hanau, Germany, battalion logistics officer and company commander in A Company, 1st Battalion, 2d Aviation Regiment (Attack) at Camp Eagle, Korea. Additionally, Athanasakis attained pilot in command and unit trainer status in the AH-64D Apache Longbow.

In 2009, Athanasakis joined the "Night Stalkers" and was assigned as a platoon leader in B Company, 2d Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne). He was then selected to serve as the B Company commander, and attained pilot in command status in the MH-47G Chinook.

Athanasakis’ awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Air Medal w/Valor device, Air Medal (numeral 3), Army Commendation Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Achievement Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with three campaign stars, Iraq Campaign Medal with three campaign stars, Global War on Terror Service Medal, NATO Medal, Korean Defense Service Medal, Overseas Service Ribbon (numeral 3), Presidential Unit Award, Valorous Unit Award, Army Meritorious Unit Award, Air Force Meritorious Unit Award, the Combat Action Badge, Senior Army Aviator Badge, Parachutist Badge, and Air Assault Badge. Additionally, he was awarded the AAAA Bronze Order of St. Michael and the Norwegian Army Foot March Badge.

Clarkson University educates the leaders of the global economy. One in five alumni already leads as an owner, CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. With its main campus located in Potsdam, New York, and additional graduate program and research facilities in the Capital Region and Beacon, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university with signature areas of academic excellence and research directed toward the world's pressing issues. Through more than 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, education, sciences and the health professions, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo and connect discovery and innovation with enterprise.

Photo caption: Army Maj. Michael C. Athanasakis, professor of military science and chair of the Army ROTC department at Clarkson University, has been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel. Above, Athanasakis' wife, Teanna, places his new shoulder boards, while their children and Col. Philip J. Ryan look on.

[A photograph for media use is available http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/mathanasakis-promotion.jpg.]

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or aharrison@clarkson.edu.]

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