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Fort Worth Speakers and Representatives

Terry B. Smith, Ph.D.

Professor of Political Science and Director of the Honors Program, Columbia College

After eighteen years as Executive Vice President and Dean for Academic Affairs, and one year as Interim President at Columbia College, Dr. Terry Smith joined the full-time political science faculty in August 2015.  He teaches courses in American politics and directs the Honors Program.


Dr. Smith graduated cum laude from Central Methodist College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and minors in English and History.  He received both his Master of Arts and Ph.D. in political science from Michigan State University.  He was selected as a Fulbright Scholar to England in 1991 and attended the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University in 2002.


He is an American politics enthusiast and serves as a radio and television election analyst.  He gives regular political commentary on the local public radio station.  Dr. Smith has been active in local community and professional organizations and is currently on the board of Cradle to Career Alliance, a not-for-profit that coordinates activities for at-risk youth.  He is also on the board of the Paul D. Higday Mozart Music Trust, which brings fine classical music performances to mid-Missouri.


Dr. Smith and his wife, Jane, will celebrate their fiftieth wedding anniversary in August, 2016.  They have four grown children and seven grandchildren.


Captain Mike Steffen

Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base

Capt. Mike Steffen is the 11th Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base, Texas, since the installation was established as the first joint reserve base in October of 1994.  The installation’s mission is to provide joint training capability and resources to enable Warfighter readiness while sustaining personnel and their families, community compatibility, and a culture of safety. 

Captain Steffen is a native of Bedford, Virginia. He was commissioned in May 1992 through the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps and designated a naval aviator in 1994. He is a graduate from Virginia Tech with a Bachelor of Science degree in History and holds a Master’s of Science in Global Business Leadership from the University of San Diego.

His sea duty tours include serving with the Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS-4) “Black Knights”, deploying twice with Carrier Air Wing 14 (CVW 14) aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) and USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72), along with two combat tours conducting special operations forward deployed in Iraq with both the Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 4 (HCS-4) “Redwolves” and HCS-5 “Firehawks” in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. 

Captain Steffen shore tours included the east coast HS Wing Weapons School as an instructor pilot and the FLIR/Hellfire weapons system subject matter expert, as well serving on the staffs of Helicopter Wing Reserve, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, and Naval Air Forces Reserve.

His command tours include the Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 60 (HSL-60) “Jaguars” and the Maritime Support Wing, based in Coronado, California.

Captain Steffen has flown over 2,700 total hours, including more than 1000 hours on Night Vision Goggles and over 350 combat flight hours.  His personal awards include the Air Medal Single Action with Combat “V” (two awards), Air Medal Strike/Flight (eight awards), and Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), along with other numerous campaign and unit awards.


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