Military Service Award. This is given to a GMC Corps of Cadets alumnus who has rendered unusual and conspicuous service, heroic effort and action or service to their city, state or nation while bringing honor to GMC and the Corps of Cadets.
COL Thomas Hanley graduated from Georgia Military College in 1990 and was commissioned Second Lieutenant. He held primary leadership assignments at every rank from 2LT to COL, and served 30 years commissioned service as an Infantryman to achieve the Order of Saint Maurice. He participated in Operation Desert Shield, Operation Crested River, Operation Noble Eagle, and Operation Enduring Freedom and served in the Army Staff, U.S. Southern Command, U.S. Central Command, National Guard Bureau, Training and Doctrine Command, Joint Readiness Training Center, and the U.S. Army Infantry School. His primary troop leading experience was with the Georgia Army National Guard‘s 48th Infantry Brigade as a company grade officer. He then commanded at the Colonel level as a combat advisor under the Combined Joint Task Force 82 of the 82nd Airborne Division. He earned the Combat Infantrymen Badge with the 10th Mountain Division and was a member of the inceptual organization that would become “Task Force Phoenix” as a designer and planner. COL Hanley was responsible for coordinating the establishment of the Georgia National Guard state partnership with Argentina, while serving at U.S. Southern Command as Senior National Guard Advisor. He was a principle member of the U.S. Central Command Staff who planned the drawdown of forces in Afghanistan in 2013-2014. COL Hanley finished his career at the Joint Readiness Training Center preparing ARNG Brigades for Combat operations, while on jump status. Airborne All the Way!
COL Hanley’s extensive awards and decorations include: the Bronze Star, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Service Medal, Overseas Service Ribbon, Army Campaign Medal, Humanitarian Service Ribbon, Army Reserve Component Achievement Medal, Army Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, Army Staff Identification Badge, and the Army Parachutist Badge.
COL Hanley has had an exemplary military career and credits GMC as being the foundation for that. “Since 18 years old, the work ethic, leadership, mental toughness, and drive to achieve started right here in Milledgeville. This pace never changed for the next 30 years,“ he stated. One of the many lessons instilled in him from his time at GMC is the importance of the bonds formed with his classmates, brothers and sisters, “family” for life. Faith in the brotherhood is the guiding principle that, to this day, keeps him focused on purpose and relationships to accomplish team goals. This and the “unbridled enthusiasm and military energy that made you try hard, compete, help a buddy, and achieve” contributed to the successes he has enjoyed. In wanting to give back to the institution that has given him so much, Tom is currently working on a strategic plan to create an aviation course for GMC. He is also one of the founding members of the Opera Cum Fidelitate Endowed Scholarship.
COL Hanley and his wife, Damaris reside in Kissimmee, Florida. They have four children, Chelsea and Kaitlyn Hanley and Joseph and Gianna Celeste.