Donald T. Ward, Ph.D., Col. USAF (Ret)

Ward WebColonel Ward was born in 1936 in Sidney, Texas.  He earned a Bachelor of Science in aeronautical engineering (1958) from the University of Texas, a Master of Science in astronautics (1965) from AFIT, and a Ph.D. (1975) from Mississippi State University.  After completing Air Force pilot training in October 1960, he flew the F-100 Super Saber with deployments to participate in the Berlin Crisis (1961) and the Cuban Missile Crisis (1962).  Ward completed the Empire Test Pilot’s School in 1966, winning the McKenna Trophy for top fixed wing student.  Except for two 12-month breaks (Vietnam and Korea) he served as an experimental test pilot as (1) an instructor at the Aerospace Research Pilot School; (2) F-15 Joint Test Force Director, Commandant of the USAF Test Pilot School, and Commander of the 4950th Test Wing.  He holds the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross with two oak leaf clusters, the Bronze Star, and the Air Medal with seven oak leaf clusters.  

Retiring from the USAF in 1981, Ward taught aerospace engineering at Texas A&M for 19 years, retiring in August 2000.  He was named the national AIAA Faculty Advisor in 1997.  He is a member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots, the Society of Flight Test Engineers, and the International Council of Systems Engineering. He became a Fellow in the AIAA in May 2001.    

Ward continues to teach Continuing Education courses for Kansas University.  He serves on the AVSI staff, most recently as Program Manager for the Systems Architecture Virtual Integration (SAVI) program. 

Ward has been married to the former Joyce Hicks for over 61 years and they have 2 daughters, 5 grandchildren, and 4 great grandchildren.