Claflin News

Claflin Trustee Calvin H. Elam Becomes First African-American General in the S.C. Air National Guard

Jan 16, 2013

A prestigious honor has come to a member of the Claflin University Board of Trustees. Calvin H. Elam was promoted to Brigadier General, becoming the first African-American to achieve this rank in the S.C. Air National Guard. Elam has been a member of the University’s Board of Trustees since 2009 and currently serves as chair of the Board’s Budget and Finance Committee. He was promoted during a special ceremony Sunday.

President Dr. Henry N. Tisdale congratulated Elam on his accomplishment.

“The entire Claflin University family enthusiastically congratulates Trustee Elam on his high achievement,” Tisdale said.  “We are pleased that he is serving on our board and he has demonstrated a strong commitment to the aspirations and goals of the University.”

Elam previously served as the assistant adjutant general for air in the S.C. National Guard.  He is the CEO of the Elam Financial Group, a wealth management and financial planning firm in Columbia. 

 Elam is a native of Greenwood who was commissioned in 1988 after graduation from the Air National Guard’s Academy of Military Science.  He has a Bachelor of Science degree in business marketing from the University of South Carolina’s Darla Moore School of Business.

In the S.C. Air National Guard, Elam  also was the commander of the 169th Mission Support Group and served in several other capacities for the same company.  He currently resides in Irmo with his wife, Mary, and their three children.

Claflin Photos