Washington Adventist University (WAU) graduate Richard Matthews was honored on July 25 by the NAACP at its 108th NAACP National Convention at the Baltimore Convention Center. Matthews was awarded the NAACP’s 2017 Roy Wilkins Renown Service Award at the 42nd Annual Armed Services & Veteran Affairs Awards Luncheon.
“This honor is bestowed upon those who, through outstanding service and action, demonstrate the NAACP mission within the ranks of the military,” said Dawn C. Chase, Director of Diversity and Inclusion for the NAACP.
Matthews was recognized for the service he provided when he rented a truck and drove 1,000 miles to deliver pallets of clean drinking water to the residents of Flint, Michigan.
“We can’t all lead, but we can all serve,” said Matthews, who said that the mission trip to Flint was an effort to live out the tenants of service to others, which he learned at WAU. “We have a duty to serve.”
Matthews is a 2016 graduate of the WAU School of Graduate and Professional Studies, where he earned his Master of Arts degree in Religion while working full time at the Pentagon as Deputy Director, Geographic Command Intelligence Support for the Director for Defense Intelligence (Warfighter Support).
“He is an outstanding individual who was also recognized this year as Alumnus of the Year at Washington Adventist University,” said Nicole Currier, Dean of the WAU School of Graduate and Professional Studies.
Matthews retired from the U.S. Army in 2004 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During his military career, he held various command and staff leadership positions including assignments in the 1st and 9th Infantry Division. He is a graduate of the Military Intelligence Basic and Advanced Officers Course, Post Graduate Intelligence Program, Command and General Staff College, School of Advanced Military Studies with a master’s in military arts and sciences, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology Seminar XXI.