Mr. Gilliland is a 1949 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, but transferred to the Air Force where he flew the F-84 in a 1952 combat tour in Korea. Transitioning to the Reserves in 1960, Mr. Gilliland joined Lockheed as a test pilot and rapidly advanced to the “Skunkworks” where “Kelly” Johnson made him the Chief Test Pilot of the SR-71. First to fly it on December 22,1964, he eventually achieved it’s full envelope expansion of speed and altitude. A Fellow in the S.E.T.P., Mr. Gilliland received the prestigious Kincheloe Award, which was followed by many other aerospace awards and recognitions.