Regimental Division,
Office Chief of Signal

United States Army Signal Center, Fort Gordon, GA
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Header insignia for Distinguished Member biography pageDistinguished Member of the Regiment biography for

LTG (Ret.) William J. Hilsman (1998)

LTG (Ret.) William Hilsman has been a leader for 30 years of military service – directing the development of telecommunications, computer and information systems for the military and federal government – as well as for 15 years in the private sector. He was inducted as a Distinguished Member of the Regiment in 1998 because he was key in shaping today’s communications-electronics posture for the Army, but also because he was the guiding light in founding the National Science Center in Augusta, Ga.

LTG Hilsman’s assignments included chief of the Special Projects Division, U.S. Army Strategic Communications Command; plans and operations officer, office of the Army’s Chief of Staff; two jobs with the office of the Army’s Vice Chief of Staff as Signal systems plans officer and chief of the Research Team Information Science Group, Management Information Systems Directorate; commander, 144th Signal Battalion in Europe; chief, Training Support Division, Army Combat Arms Training Board, then president of that board; special assistant to the deputy chief of staff for training in schools for the Training and Doctrine Command at the Army’s Infantry Center, Fort Benning, Ga.; commander, 1st Signal Group at Fort Lewis, Wash.; and project officer, Army tactical data systems, and provisional commander of the Army Communications Research and Development Command, Fort Monmouth, N.J.

While commanding the Signal Center and Fort Gordon, the idea of the National Science Center came to him. He founded the National Science Center after promoting it to other leaders in the Army and within industry. The center partners with the Army and is dedicated to motivating America’s youth to pursue education and careers in math and science.

LTG Hilsman directed the Defense Communications Agency before he retired from the Army in 1983. During that time he provided integration and technical guidance for implementing the architecture and technical revolution of the Worldwide Military Command and Control System. He also chaired the Military Communications-Electronics Board, which provided a liaison for joint international communications issues, and managed the National Communications System, responsible for the communications facilities of various federal agencies.

In the private sector LTG Hilsman chaired the Board of Advanced Digital Technologies Company, which focused on wire digital technology; was cofounder and chief executive officer of DTI International, specializing in technology for telecommunications and educational markets; and president, chief executive officer and chairman of the board for InterDigital Communications Corporation, pioneering digital wireless local loop systems using Time Division Multiple Access and Code Division Multiple Access technology. LTG Hilsman serves on President Clinton’s National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee, which is composed of chief executive officers from the telecommunications industry who advise the President on emergency-preparedness issues.

LTG Hilsman’s military awards and decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit with two oak-leaf clusters, Bronze Star with two oak-leaf clusters and Meritorious Service Medal.

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Last modified on:
April 04, 2012

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