Hobart—Crockett Elementary in Midland, Texas, was officially unveiled as “General Tommy Franks Elementary” during a ribbon cutting ceremony on Aug. 24. The dedication ceremony was attended by national, state and local representatives and featured a UH1 Huey Iroquois flyover and special exhibit tours detailing the extraordinary life of Gen. Franks. The Midland Independent School Board voted to change the school’s name in honor of Franks in May.
“It’s an esteemed honor to be recognized by the Midland Independent School Board and the community of Midland,” said Gen. Franks. “Through my work at the General Tommy Franks Leadership Institute and Museum and the Four Star Leadership program, it has been my mission to educate young leaders and share the story of the United States military. I am proud to be part of the establishment of this elementary school.”
General Tommy Franks Elementary opened for the 2017-2018 school year on Aug. 28. In addition to undergoing an official name change, the school also welcomed a new principal and will be the first local campus to adopt the Values Coach Training for the entire campus. General Tommy Franks Elementary serves students from the Highway 349 area of Midland.
“My life has been about giving back to my country through service,” said Gen. Franks. “My military career has taken me across the globe, but I am happy to return home and fulfill a personal promise to serve through education.”
Franks was born in Wynnewood, Oklahoma, and grew up in Midland, Texas, where he graduated from Robert E. Lee High School. He joined the United States Army, and in 1967, as a distinguished graduate of the Artillery Officer Candidate School, he was commissioned a second lieutenant and sent to Vietnam. Franks’ service earned him six awards for Valor and three Purple Hearts.
In June 2000, he was promoted to four-star general and assigned as commander-in-chief, United States Central Command where he garnered international fame for successfully leading American and coalition troops in two strategically unprecedented campaigns in two years – Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom in Iraq. His numerous awards include five Distinguished Service Medals, four Legions of Merit, four Bronze Stars, three Purple Hearts and the Nation’s highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, awarded by President George W. Bush on Dec. 14, 2004.
Gen. Franks attended the University of Texas, Arlington, where he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and Shippensburg University where he graduated with a Master’s Degree in Public Administration. He is also a graduate of the Armed Forces Staff College and the Army War College. Since his retirement from the military in 2003, Franks along with his wife
Since his retirement from the military in 2003, Franks along with his wife Cathy opened the General Tommy Franks Leadership Institute and Museum. Through his work at the museum, Franks also established Four Star Leadership, a summer program geared towards teaching high school students the fundamentals of effective leadership.
The General Tommy Franks Leadership Institute and Museum was created as a historical foundation dedicated to telling the story of the United States military and education. Its mission is to advance the development of this world class leadership training institution and museum.
For more information on Gen. Franks, please visit TommyFranksMuseum.org.