June 28, 2011
LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas has a new director for the Office of Professional Military Graduate Education. Gary “Michael” Denning, a retired U.S. Marine Corps colonel with 27 years of service – including three tours of service in Iraq – will be the new director, effective July 11.
“Col. Denning comes to KU with impressive military experience, an educational background that includes a national security fellowship with the Harvard John F. Kennedy School of Government and a deep appreciation for KU as an alumnus,” said Sara Rosen, dean of Graduate Studies. “The University of Kansas is indebted to Dr. Adrian Lewis for his work and leadership as the initial director of the OPMGE. Col. Denning will bring his wealth of experience to the KU office with a well-established track record of success.”
Denning said KU is in a unique position to enhance collaboration with the military.
“KU is committing significant resources to help enhance the quality of professional military graduate education,” Denning said. “The campus can have a positive effect on the whole Army officer corps, since many Army leaders pass through Fort Leavenworth at some point in their careers. I look forward to working with the KU faculty to explore additional educational opportunities in partnership with each of the Armed Forces, as well as elements within the Department of Defense, Department of State and other government agencies.”
Denning’s military career includes 17 years of operational experience, including two tours as aviation squadron commanding officer, one tour as assistant chief of staff/operations for a Marine aviation wing, and one tour as assistant chief of staff for air operations for a Marine combat division. His post-Marine career includes instructing human terrain teams in preparation for combat operations in Afghanistan and Iraq and serving as a project director for Marstel-Day, an environmental consulting firm in Fredericksburg, Va.
Denning earned his bachelor’s from KU, a master’s with distinction from the Naval War College and a national security fellowship from the Kennedy School of Public Affairs at Harvard University.