Patriotic Speaker for the 238th
Fourth of July Celebration
Each year a Patriotic Speaker or Speaker of the Day is
chosen by the Committee to speak to our community to
kick-off July 4th. Congratulations to the Patriotic Speaker for the 238th Fourth of July Celebration, COL(Ret) Joe McGraw.
COL(Ret) Joe McGraw graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1994 and was commissioned as a US Army Armor Officer and attended basic officer training and Ranger school before assignment to the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regimen. He completed the U.S. Army Special Forces Qualification Course in 1998 before assignment with 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) in Fort Lewis, Washington.
Over 23 years, Joe commanded Special Forces units from the A team detachment level to Battalion Command, serving in named operations: Enduring Freedom-Afghanistan, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom-Philippines. His last operational assignment was as the Commander of Special Operations Task Force West in Afghanistan from 2013 through early 2014. He retired from active duty in 2017.
Joe currently resides with his family in Portsmouth, RI and works as an Associate Professor at the Naval War College in Newport, RI where he teaches in the Joint Military Operations Department as well as electives on Irregular Warfare, Military Deception and Special Operations. He is an assistant coach for the Portsmouth High School Football team and
co-author of the book “The Sovereignty Solution”. He is married to the beautiful Lieutenant Colonel (Ret) Leigh McGraw. They have three children: Katie (20), Tommy (19) and
Bristol 4th of July Committee
General Chairman: Chuck MacDonough
P.O. Box 561
Bristol, RI 02809