Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Farris Carlos Hill ’86 Receives the 2023 Distinguished Service Award
Natural leader. Accomplished professional. Highly respected Clemson role model.
Retired Brig. Gen. Carlos Hill, a Ninety Six native and Air Force ROTC scholarship recipient, graduated from Clemson in 1986 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. A 32-year military career followed, culminating with his service as Mobilization Assistant to the Director of Legislative Liaison in the Office of the Secretary of the Air Force.
In that role he was the liaison between the Air Force and Congress for all programs, air and space weapons systems and legislative inquiries. He was responsible for ensuring the full authorization of the Air Force’s $145 billion annual budget.
In addition to his Clemson degree, Carlos earned a master’s degree in management and human relations from Abilene Christian University in Texas. He also attended several military schools and programs, including the Squadron Officer’s School, the Air Command and Staff College and the Air War College, all at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, and the U.S. Air Force Enterprise Leadership Program at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia.
Carlos received numerous awards and recognitions for his service, including the Air Force Legion of Merit, Air Force Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Air Force Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon.
He was promoted to Brigadier General in 2015 and retired from military service in 2019. He continues to work at the Pentagon in the civilian role of Director of Air Force Reserve Policy Integration.
Carlos served on the Clemson Alumni Association’s board of directors from 2014 to 2019. As a board member, he chaired the Diversity and Inclusion Committee in 2016 and was the CAA’s representative on the Clemson University Board of Visitors for 2017-2018. He is president of the Northern Virginia Clemson Club, which is a part of the regional Baltimore/Washington, DC Clemson Club.
He has played a leadership role in efforts to make Clemson’s military history an important component of the Library of Congress’ Veterans History Project. Through this project, the Library of Congress is collecting, preserving and providing access to the personal accounts of American war veterans. Carlos has helped to add the stories of 25 Clemson veterans to the project.
Carlos frequently returns to Clemson to speak to and mentor current students, including Air Force ROTC cadets. In 2015, he established the Farris Carlos Hill Diversity and Inclusion Excellence Endowment to support retention of underrepresented Clemson students.
In 2022, he established the first endowment to support Clemson’s nationally acclaimed Call Me MISTER program. His gift created the Call Me MISTER Endowed Scholarship Fund. Call Me MISTER works to increase the pool of teachers from diverse backgrounds available to serve particularly in South Carolina’s lowest performing elementary schools. Student participants are largely selected from among underserved, socio-economically disadvantaged and educationally at-risk communities.
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