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Lt Col Ashley Fagan ’97 Shares Leadership Insights

At the first Randolph-Macon Academy assembly of 2019, students and faculty had the opportunity to speak with 1997 R-MA alumnus Lt Col Ashley Fagan. Lt Col Fagan’s parents both come from military backgrounds and he was interested in pursuing a career in the armed forces just as they had. He attended R-MA, becoming a member of the winter swim team and a leader in cadre. He graduated with an ROTC scholarship to the University of Kentucky and went on to major in Japanese. 
Lt Col Fagan speaks to the R-MA cadets about the path he took after graduating from R-MA, and the lessons he learned along the way.
Lt Col Fagan claims to have learned the most about everyday problem solving during his time in college. He received his first master’s degree from the University of Kentucky and later received his second from John Hopkins University in Maryland. When he finished his time at UK, he entered the Air Force as an Intel Officer and traveled to many different countries such as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, and South Korea. Lt Col Fagan joined the Air Force Reserves after completing his time on active duty, and remains part of the Reserves today.
Lt Col Fagan spoke to the student body about the importance of leadership and communication. They key, he says, to cross-generational management and leadership is trust and the ability to recognize what different kinds of people want. He explained that one should learn to not only lead from positions of direct authority, but also be able to lead amongst their peers. The final lessons he wanted to impart upon R-MA cadets that afternoon was to always focus on gaining leadership knowledge, and that to be in charge, one must also show how much they care for the people they are leading.