First African American Commander 2nd Battalion, 233rd Regiment, Regional Training Institute

Colonel (COL) Walter L. Jones:

COL Jones was born on 8 July 1951, in Eudora, Arkansas. He graduated from G. C. Johns High School, Eudora in 1969. He received his Bachelor’s Degree in construction engineering from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. COL Jones has a Master of Art degree in Business from Webster University, and a Master’s in Strategic Studies from the United States Army War College.

COL Jones entered military service in May 1971 as a draftee. After serving nineteen months (fourteen in Korea with 2nd Infantry Division), he received an honorable discharge in December 1972. COL Jones enlisted in to the 216th Medical Company, Arkansas Army National Guard in September 1977. Later, he entered the Arkansas Military Academy Officer Candidate School and received his commission as 2nd Lieutenant in March 1981.

As a member of the Arkansas Army National Guard, COL Jones served distinctively in various military assignments to include Platoon Leader, 216th Medical Company, Detachment Commander, Headquarters Detachment, 125th Medical Battalion, Commander, 216th Medical Company, S1, 125th Medical Battalion, S3, 125th Medical Battalion, Admin/Log Officer, 25th Rear Area Operations Center, Executive Officer, 125th Medical Battalion, Plans and Operations Officer, Marksmanship Training Unit, Safety Officer and S3/Executive Officer, Headquarters, 233rd Regiment Regional Training Institute.

COL Jones served as Commander, 2nd Battalion, 233rd Regional Training Institute from March 2002 to August 2004. He was the first African American to serve as Battalion Commander in the 233rd Regional Training Institute. He later served as Deputy Chief of Staff Logistics, Joint Forces Headquarters and culminated his career as Post Commander, Camp Robinson Maneuver Training Center.

COL Jones received the following awards and decorations: Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, with Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Commendation Medal, with Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Achievement Medal, Army Service Ribbon, National Defense Service Ribbon, Army Forces Expeditionary Medal (Korea), Korean Defense Service Medal, Army Reserve Component Achievement Medal, and the Army Physical Fitness Badge.

COL Jones’ military education includes AMEDD Office Basic Course, AMEDD Officer Advance Course, Ordnance Officer Advance Course, Engineer Officer Advance Course, Combined Arms and Service Staff School, Command and General Staff Officer Course, National Defense Course, and the United States Army War College. COL Jones retired on March 31, 2011, with over 36 years of military service.