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First Female Combat Arms Officer Commissioned From Lincoln University of Missouri Army ROTC Program

December 20th, 2022

On Friday, Dec. 16, Lincoln University recognized ROTC Cadet Christiaunna Kelley at the 2022 Fall Commissioning Ceremony in Pawley Theater, MLK Hall. The commissioning marked the cadet’s transformation to second lieutenant in the United States Army.

LU alumnus Lt. Col. Charlies Slider III served as guest speaker for the ceremony. A three-time bronze medal winner, Slider currently serves as the operations officer in the Office of the Chief of Armor at the U.S. Armor School at Fort Benning, Georgia. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in field artillery in 2002 from Lincoln University and went on to earn his Bachelor of Arts in sociology and a master’s degree in operational art from the School of Advanced Military Studies at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. In addition to his assignments in Korea; Fort Stewart, Georgia; Fort Campbell, Kentucky; Fort Riley, Kansas; and Fort Bliss, Texas, Slider’s overseas deployments include several to Iraq and Afghanistan in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Resolute Support. 


“The positions he held and will hold are a testament to his selfless service, to putting others first, leading from the front, and living what the Army definition of leadership is all about,” LTC Bell said while introducing Slider. 

Slider recognized the accomplishments of Cadet Kelley, a Memphis, Tennessee native who majored in Business Administration and was an LU cheerleader.

“One of the most humbling achievements is that she is the first female combat arms officer to commission from this program — and I think that in itself deserves a round of applause,” Slider said. “I leave you with this sage advice: Remember your oaths against all enemies foreign and domestic. Those words have meaning. The American people, and most nobly, the world, looks to you as a sign of hope — an example of what right looks like. Congratulations on this huge achievement, and we are very proud of your accomplishments.”


View more photos on Flickr.


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