Officers, Directors, & Staff
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Peter C. Bayer Jr. , President
Pete Bayer proudly served over 29 years as a Soldier in the United States Army and was the 61st Colonel of the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment leading the Blackhorse during its combat deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2005. He spent the majority of his career in operations and training with duty in multiple Armor and Cavalry units in Germany and the United States including four post 9/11 operational and combat tours in Kuwait and Iraq. Highlights include service as the commander of the 2nd Battalion 69th Armor; G3 Operations Officer of the 3rd Infantry Division during the 2003 invasion of Iraq; Deputy Commanding General and Assistant Commandant of the U.S. Army Armor Center; Chief of Staff of I Corps and Multinational Corps Iraq in Baghdad in 2010 and Director of Strategy, Plans and Policy on the Army Staff in the Pentagon.
Pete joined Penske Logistics in 2014 and currently serves as the Area Vice President, Northeast. He and his wife Lhoryn live in Lancaster PA.
Ricky Pring, Vice President
Born in November 1959 in Warren Pennsylvania to George and Kathleen Pring as the youngest of eight children Ricky grew up on a farm until his family moved to Kissimmee Florida in the mid-seventies. Ricky joined the Army in January 1977 under the delayed entry program and completed Basic and AIT in one of the first OUST training courses at Fort Knox Kentucky in October.
He proudly served his first tour as a Loader/Driver/Gunner and Tank Commander in the 3rd Platoon, M Company, 3rd Squadron 11th ACR. He received multiple several awards for gunnery skills and leadership including Top Tank and NCO of the quarter. However, his most notable accomplishment was meeting the love of his life Petra Knoth a month into his assignment and marring her in January of 1980.
After a tour as and OSUT instructor from 1982 - 1984 A Company 1st Battalion 1st Training Brigade Fort Knox Kentucky he returned to Germany serving with the 7th CATC in Vilseck and then 2/37 Armor as a Platoon Sergeant, Company and Battalion Master Gunner before moving to D Company 1/37 Armor and serving as the Platoon Sergeant for the 1st Armored Division CAT Team. The CAT platoon finished second out of 16 platoons in the American team competition. With the international competition canceled due to Desert Storm, he deployed to Saudi Arabia with 3rd Brigade 1st AD and invaded Iraq participating in battles with two Iraqi Armor divisions as well as the battle at 73 easting.
He again joined the 11th ACR in 1998 at Fort Irwin serving saw the 1st Squadron Operations Sergeant Major. From 2001 - 2004 he was the Command Sergeant Major of 1/13 Armor at Fort Riley Kansas deploying in 2003 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom providing support to 3 ID/ 101st /82nd /1st AD in operations in Iraq.
In 2004 he became the 16th Regimental Command Sergeant Major of the Blackhorse and led the Regiment during a highly successful combat deployment to Iraq in 2005.
Provided support to rotational units and assisted in deploying the Regiment minus in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom providing two Squadrons in and around Bagdad and the Regimental HQ as the Multi National division North West HQ.
Ricky continued to support Soldiers after leaving uniform with A-T Solutions providing asymmetric warfare training to the US Military, police and other agencies holding positions as a Deputy Program Manager, Program Manager and Vice president of West Coast Training Operations.
RONDO JACKSON, Secretary
Rondo enlisted in 1974 as a Military Policeman and served at Ft. Carson, CO., and in Germany for 6 years. As an MP, he was a Narcotics Investigator and Customs Inspector and worked Scout, Patrol and Narcotics Detector Dogs. In 1980 he reenlisted to be a Cavalry Scout and served as a Senior Track Commander, M-3 Bradley Commander/Senior Cavalry Scout Instructor and Platoon Sergeant in the 6th and 5th Cavalry and 5th /15th Cavalry, 1st ATB. He served from 1983-85 in HHT 3/11th ACR in the S-3 and later in the S-4 as the Assistant Support Platoon Leader and Transportation Section Leader/ Squadron Ammo Sergeant. After 14.5 years he was medically retired from service. Rondo then went to work for the Idaho Department of Corrections Maximum Security Institution as a Corrections Officer, a Field Training Officer, Instructor and Parole Officer. He moved up to Department Security Threat Group/Gang Coordinator and Investigator. He went to work with the Oregon Department of Corrections as a Corrections Officer and Gang Specialist, when he was again medically retired in 2008. Rondo and his wife Loraine moved back to Kentucky where he still consults with several different Gang Investigation groups.
DAN CAUGHEY, Treasurer
Dan Caughey served with 1st BN 18th Infantry, First Infantry Division from 1972-75 leading a rifle platoon, 4.2 mortar platoon, scout platoon and finally serving as BDE HHC XO. Dan transferred to the Finance Corps after a serious spinal injury during a HALO jump with the 1st Division Sport Parachute Team. Dan Commanded 2nd Finance Section supporting 11th ACR, Fulda and Wildflicken Communities from 1980-1983, and commanded 22nd Finance in New Ulm, from 1984-1985 supporting the 56th Artillery BDE (Pershing) in Neu Ulm and the 1st Infantry Division FWD at Goeppingen. After CGSC, Dan served as an Inspector General then as Finance Officer and Deputy Comptroller at Presidio of San Francisco. Since retiring from active service in 1993, Dan has been in private practice as a Certified Public Accountant, residing in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife Helga. Their son, CPT Patrick J. Caughey continued the cavalry tradition serving combat tours with 3/7 CAV in Baghdad and 1/71 CAV in Kandahar and is currently attending Wharton School of Business in Philadelphia. Dan can be reached at email@example.com or 415-595-2118.
CHARLEY WATKINS, At-Large Director
Initially drafted into the Army in 1966 after 3 years of college he later attended Warrant Officer Flight Training 1967-1968. Upon graduation he was assigned to the 11th ACR in Vietnam and served as Command and Control Pilot for Colonel George S. Patton 1968-1969. Receiving a direct commission in 1970 to 1LT, he served as Helicopter Coordinator for COMPHIBRON ONE (Commander of Amphibious Group One, U.S. Navy) for 3 years. Served as Deputy G-1 for I Corp for 3 years and retired in 1989. Currently resides in Colorado Springs, CO,
BOB HATCHER, Director of Scholarships
Bob Hatcher was commissioned a Lieutenant of Infantry in 1988 after graduation from Marion Military Institute and went on to the University of Monetvallo while serving in the Alabama Army National Guard. Bob served on active duty from 1990 to 2016 in a variety of command and staff positions in the United States, Germany, Korea, Norway and the Middle East. He attended the Combined Logistics Captains Career Course and was later assigned to the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment at Fort Irwin, CA from 2002 to 2006. There he served as the Support Squadron S3 and SPO, the Regimental XO, and Deputy Commander. While deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom Bob served simultaneously as the Regimental XO and the G4/C4 for Multi-National Force Northwest in Mosul, Iraq. Bob commanded 64th Brigade Support Battalion, 3d BCT, 4th Infantry Division at Fort Carson and deployed for 15 months to Baghdad Iraq. He retired in 2016 from the Combined Arms Support Command at Fort Lee, VA where he served as the Chief of Staff. He and his wife are extremely active in nonprofit organizations serving military and local communities.
Bob Akam, Director of Fund Raising
Colonel Akam culminated his 30 year career in November 2014 as the Deputy Director of the United States Army's Sexual Harassment / Assault Response (SHARP) and Prevention Team.
He hails from Salem, New Hampshire. His education includes a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting from Norwich University, a Masters in General Administration from Central Michigan University and a Masters in Strategic Studies from the United States Army War College. He is a graduate of the Armor Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, the Combined Arms Staff Service School, the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, the Armed Forces Staff College, and the U.S. Army War College.
In 1986, he served with the First Squadron, Eleventh Armored Cavalry Regiment on the East-West German Border. There he held positions of Platoon Leader, Company Executive Officer and Squadron Logistical Support Platoon Leader.
He commanded Bravo Troop in the Second Squadron, Seventh United States Cavalry at Fort Carson, Colorado and served as the Battalion Operations Officer for First Battalion, Thirty-Third Armor Battalion and Brigade Operations Officer for Third Brigade, Second Infantry Division at Fort Lewis WA.
In 2002, Colonel Akam assumed command of First Squadron, Eleventh Armored Cavalry Regiment at Fort Irwin, California.
He was selected in 2004 to be the Division Operations Officer for First Cavalry Division in Baghdad, Iraq, and later Fort Hood Texas.
Colonel Akam commanded the United States Army's Fifth Recruiting Brigade from July 2008 to July 2010.
From 2010 to 2012, Colonel Akam was deployed to Afghanistan where he served as the Deputy Director for Operations and Future Plans, and later the Commander of the Multi-National Brigade in Uruzgan.
Prior to his appointment to the SHARP Team, he served as the Chief of Staff of the First Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas.
Currently, Bob volunteers as an outreach Ambassador and Admissions Representative for Norwich University; is a member of Employer Support to the Guard and Reserve (ESGR); and works with the San Antonio Coalition for Veterans and Families (SACVF).
Colonel Akam is married to Colonel Melissa Sturgeon. He has one son, Ryan, who is a graduate of Texas A&M University and lives near College Station.
DALE SKILES, Director of Memberships
Dale Skiles attended Henderson State College, State College of Arkansas, and graduated from University of the State of New York, Albany while on active duty. He attended graduate school at Kansas State University. Dale enlisted in January 1973. His assignments included L Troop 3/2 ACR-Section Leader, CSC 3/63 Armor-Section Leader, 1/4 Cavalry Squadron-Platoon Sgt, US Army NCO Academy- Ft Riley-Sr Instructor, RS-3 11th ACR-USR reporting/Force Modernization/Force Development, VIII ARMR w/ duty at Readiness Group Ft Riley-Armor-Cavalry Advisor, Training Support Branch USAREUR DSCOPS Training-USAREUR MILES Program Mgr. After leaving active duty in 1988, he served in the 312th Support Center-1st Armored Division Rear Area Operations Center and the 4154th USAR School, retiring as a MSG in 1998. Served as DAC in USAREUR DCSOPS Training-Laser Training Systems, then System Training Devices and finished as Chief of Training Devices. After returning stateside in 1991, Dale worked in material handling sales for local dealer before joining Toyota and then Nissan, where he still works as a National Account Mgr.
CLINT ANCKER, Director of Communications
Clint Ancker was commissioned from West Point in 1970 and served in Vietnam as Platoon Leader and Troop XO with G Troop, 2/11 ACR, rifle platoon leader with the 1-12 CAV, and Training Officer and PBO with Special Forces. From 1974-1977 he was Border Officer, Squadron Maintenance Officer, and the Commander of F Troop, 2/11 ACR. From 1984-1991 he served as S-3, 3/11 ACR; S-3, 11th ACR; Commander of 3/11 ACR: and G-3 of 2d Armored Division (Forward) during Desert Storm. Subsequent assignments included Special Assistant to the Commander-in-Chief, US Special Operations Command, Chief of the USEUCOM Military Liaison Team to Albania, and Director of the Combined Arms Doctrine Directorate, U.S. Army Combined Arms Center, as position he still holds today as a DA civilian.
SCOTT HARRISON, Director of Reunions JEREMY DOBOS, Director of Marketing/Social Media
Scott Harrison enlisted in 1978, serving on Active Duty and the Ohio National Guard while achieving the rank of SGT. After graduating from the Ohio State University in 1988, he accepted a Direct Commission as 2LT in the Medical Service Corps. After graduating in the top 5% of his OBC class, he was transferred from the National Guard to Active Duty with assignment as Med Plt Ldr, Medical Platoon, HHT, Third Squadron (1989-1990), then Ambulance Plt Ldr, Medical Troop, Combat Support Squadron (1990-92). Other assignments include: Hospital Commander; Brigade S-3; Army Staff; Joint Staff; ISAF Staff, CENTCOM Staff and G-4, Army Reserve Medical Command. Scott retired after 36 years of service and is currently employed as a contract IT Project Manager in Tampa, where he lives with his two elementary age sons.
Jeremy Dobos attended Hope College in western Michigan on an Army ROTC scholarship. He graduated in spring of 1997 and after initial officer training at Fort Knox, was assigned to Fort Irwin, serving with the Blackhorse Regiment from 1998-2001. Since 2001, he has deployed four times and has served over 40 months in combat zones with a variety of units. He was President of the Blackhorse Association from 2005-2007 and was responsible for restarting and reinvigorating the national organization. He recently retired from the US Army and is following his lifelong dream of being an entrepreneur. Jeremy is currently President and CEO of Master Printing Group, Inc. based out of Cleveland, Ohio. He is married to a wonderful woman named Deirdre and has five children.
GREG HALLMARK, WEBMASTER
Greg served with HHT 2/11 in Support Platoon from Jan 1977 to Sep 1979. After his time in the service, he attended LSU-S on the GI Bill, achieving a BS degree in Business Administration. Greg founded the web development company DesignPath Media, Inc., in 1995. He lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with his wife Tammy and his daughters Savannah and Chandler.
TOM SMART, Reunion Finance Officer
Tom Smart graduated from Gettysburg College in 1974 where he was a scholarship recipient and Distinguished Military Graduate. He served in Fulda in the RS 3 section from 1985-1986 and then as the 1st Squadron S-3 from 1986 to 1988. Following retirement in 1997, he worked for L3 Communications for 13 years and is currently an Owner/Partner in a small consulting company, ACRPros. He lives in Leesburg, VA.
KIRK MURRAY, CHAPLAIN
Kirk Murray joined the Blackhorse Regiment in September 1979 when he was assigned as an Assistant Platoon Commander of an Attack Helicopter Platoon. Later he served as the Platoon Commander and the Operations Officer of Air Troop. Next he was selected to command C-1-1, the 189-person HAWK ADA battery, located on Downs Barrack. Following his battery command, he served as the battalion’s S-3 while continuing to remain in the Downs Barrack community and commuting daily to Wildflecken. His future wife, Lynn Peters, came to Fulda in 1978 as a DODDS elementary school teacher. The Murrays met and were married in Fulda. Lynn continued to teach until they received PCS orders to England where Kirk attended Cambridge University. Following retirement from military service, Kirk earned a Master of Divinity in Practical Theology. Kirk and Lynn are currently missionaries at FamilyLife in Little Rock, Arkansas. Kirk serves as the VP of the ministry’s Global Outreach.
RANDALL D. PONDER, COPY EDITOR
Randall's first assignment as a Second Lieutenant in 1980 was with the Fulda Regional Personnel Center, which supported all units of the Regiment. He remained in the Army for twelve years as an Adjutant General's Corps and Foreign Area Officer, with his last two assignments at Headquarters, Department of the Army and at the Defense Intelligence Agency. He currently lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where he is a self-employed copy editor, writer, and communication project specialist. His company, Randall Ponder Editing, provides a variety of copy editing assistance to individuals and businesses. Please contact him at www.Editing-Expert.com or by email.
DON SNEDEKER, ASSOCIATION HISTORIAN
Don Snedeker was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant of Cavalry through the Xavier University ROTC program. He served as an Armored Cavalry and Long-Range Reconnaissance Platoon Leader in the 2nd Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam, 1969-70. He joined the Blackhorse Regiment in Fulda, Germany in 1974, serving successively as the Regimental S-3 Training Officer, First Squadron S-2, and Bravo Troop Commander. His follow-on assignments included duties in the 3rd Armored Division and the Pentagon (speech writer for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff), and as an exchange instructor at the German Army Officers' Academy. After leaving active service, he worked at SAIC and as a Deputy Director for the wounded warrior project in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness. He is currently writing a history of the 11th ACR in Vietnam and Cambodia
WAYNE K. HAMBERGER, MS, LPC, PROFESSIONAL COUNSELOR
Wayne served with 1/11 from 1981-85 as C Trp Platoon Leader, Assistant S3 Plans, B Trp XO, and C Trp Commander. He was the patrol leader and coach of the 1982 & 1983 Cavalry Cup Champions and worked with Boeselager teams from 1981-85. He served as Combat Arms Advisor to the 80th Maneuver Training Command in Richmond, VA from 1986-1990. Upon separation, he attend Jacksonville State University in Alabama obtaining his BS (Psychology) and MS (Counseling) in 1991 & 1993 and has been a professional counselor since 1995. Wayne currently works as the Learning Specialist for Athletics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).