WF native, first female two-star general retires from Texas Military Department

Local News

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — A Wichita Falls woman and the first Texas Air National Guard female two-star general has retired from the Texas Military Department.

Major General Tracy R. Norris presided over the retirement ceremony of Major. General Dawn M. Ferrell in Fort Worth on Saturday, Jan. 23.

She served in the position since November of 2015.

Major General Ferrell became the first woman in the Texas Air National Guard to be promoted to brigadier general.

Ferrell earned her degrees from Midwestern State University and enlisted in August of 1983 as an air cargo specialist in the Texas Air National Guard.

She was director of research and planning for Vernon College before joining the guard full time.

She deployed as the aerial port commander for Hurricanes Katrina and Rita relief efforts at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Belle Chase in New Orleans and Ellington Field in Houston, where her team set up a fully-functioning aerial port to handle the influx of aircraft delivering troops and supplies to the hurricane-devastated areas

In her most recent position, she served as the principal advisor to the Adjutant General of Texas for all Air National Guard issues.

She was responsible for formulating, developing and coordinating all programs, policies and plans for three Wings and more than 3,300 Air National Guard personnel throughout the state of Texas.

Major General Ferrell’s awards include:

  • The Legion of Merit
  • Defense Meritorious Service Medal
  • Meritorious Service Medal with two devices
  • Airforce Commendation Medal
  • Army Commendation Medal
  • Air Force Achievement Medal
  • Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
  • Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with one device
  • Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
  • Armed Forces Service Medal
  • Humanitarian Service Medal
  • AF Longevity Service with seven devices
  • Armed Forces Reserve Medal with two “M” devices and gold hourglass
  • Air Force Training Ribbon with one device, NATO Medal,
  • Texas Lone Star Distinguished Service Medal
  • Texas Outstanding Service Medal
  • Adjutant General’s Individual Award with two stars
  • Texas Faithful Service Medal with Five Devices

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