Content Advisory Committee

The Content Advisory Committee’s primary goal is help craft a concise and compelling narrative of the Vietnam War.



Mark Atwood Lawrence is Associate Professor of History and Senior Fellow at the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law at The University of Texas at Austin. He received his B.A. from Stanford University in 1988 and his doctorate from Yale in 1999. After teaching as a lecturer in history at Yale, he joined the History Department at UT Austin in 2000. Since then, he has published two books, Assuming the Burden: Europe and the American Commitment to War in Vietnam (University of California Press, 2005) and The Vietnam War: A Concise International History (Oxford University Press, 2008).

Lawrence is also co-editor of The First Indochina War: Colonial Conflict and Cold War Crisis (Harvard University Press, 2007), a collection of essays about the 1946-1954 conflict. He is now at work on a study of U.S. policymaking toward the developing world in the 1960s and early 70s.

Recipient of the American Historical Association’s George Louis Beer Prize and Paul Birdsall Prize for his book, Assuming the Burden: Europe and the American Commitment to War in Vietnam. Winner of President’s Associates Teaching Excellence Award, 2003-2004.



Dr. Berman, Professor Emeritus at UC Davis and now Founding Dean of the Honors College at Georgia State University as well as professor of Political Science. He completed his doctorate at Princeton University in 1977, joined the faculty at UC-Davis after earning his Ph.D. He has become an internationally recognized expert on American politics, foreign policy, the American presidency, and the war in Vietnam. The founding director of the University of California Washington Center and director of the Davis Washington program, he also served as department chair for eight years. Dr. Berman has been awarded multiple fellowships, including fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the American Council for Learned Societies.

He has been a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C., and a scholar-in-residence at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Center in Bellagio, Italy. Additionally, he became the first political scientist to receive the Bernath Lecture Prize.

A committed teacher, he has received the Outstanding Mentor of Women in Political Science Award from the Women’s Caucus for Political Science. He is the 2010 recipient of the highest honor that the Davis Division of the Academic Senate accords its members, the Faculty Research Lecturer Award. In June 2010 he was also awarded the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Mentoring Undergraduate Research.

Dr. Berman is the author of several noted publications including “Planning a Tragedy: The Americanization of the War in Vietnam,” “Lyndon Johnson’s War: The Road to Stalemate in Vietnam,” “No Peace, No Honor: Nixon, Kissinger, and Betrayal in Vietnam,” and “Perfect Spy: The Incredible Double Life of Pham Xuan An, Time Magazine Reporter and Vietnamese Communist Agent.”

Dr. Berman’s most recent book, published by HarperCollins, is a biography of Admiral Elmo Zumwalt, Jr., who rose to command of the U.S. Navy during the 1970s, when initiated sweeping reforms that modernized the fleet and challenged institutional racism. The paperback edition will be published by Naval Institute Press in September 2014.


Dr. Paulette G. Curtis, Faculty Director of Undergraduate & Pre-College Programs/Faculty Director of AnBryce Scholars Initiative, is responsible for the vision, growth and management of two summer academic programs that host nearly 400 talented national and international high-school students. In this capacity, she oversees a multi-million dollar budget and supervises three full-time staff. As first director of AnBryce Scholars Initiative at Notre Dame, Dr. Curtis is responsible for building a program that will serve talented first-generation, low-income students. Responsibilities include cohort selection, curriculum development, advising, programming, and managing a two-million dollar budget and a small support staff.

Dr. Curtis serves as a member of committee convened by the Assistant Provost that discusses matters related to recruitment and retention of faculty, post-docs and students of color at the University of Notre Dame. In a related capacity, chairs a subcommittee that is assessing the engagement of students of color in Notre Dame’s social and academic life.

She served as the Assistant Dean in the central advising office for the College of Arts and Letters (Liberal Arts) at University of Notre Dame. In addition to advising a cohort of students (approximately 500) on requirements, majors and minors, choice of courses, studying abroad, and progress to degree, along with the Associate Dean, she evaluated student appeals of Honor Code violations and also communicated College policies and procedures in various formats to faculty and other parties (e.g. Guide to Undergraduate Teaching, produced for new Arts and Letters faculty). Serves on the College Council, which votes upon academic amendments, addition of majors and minors, etc.; and is a voting member of the 20-person Undergraduate Committee on Women Faculty and Students (UCWFS).

Professor Curtis served as the Academic Dean for residential community of upper class students (approximately 400) at Harvard College. Position encompassed academic, judicial and student affairs, and required management of 20-person tutor staff and oversight of pre-professional programs. Regularly collaborated with offices across campus (e.g. University Health Services, Student Disabilities Office, Harvard Police Department) to provide student services, make referrals, etc., significant expertise advising students in academic and personal difficulty, and adjudicating academic, disciplinary and physical and sexual assault cases.

Ph.D was awarded to Dr. Curtis for her dissertation: “Locating History: Vietnam Veterans and Their Returns to the Battlefield, 1998-1999,” which examined the social politics of battlefield tourism to sites primarily in Central and Southern Vietnam among Vietnam Veterans, and based on fieldwork and travel to Vietnam between 1997 and 1999.


George Herring, retired Professor Emeritus and formerly Alumni Professor of History, has been connected to the Patterson School from the early Vince Davis years. He received his B.A. from Roanoke College in 1957 and his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in 1965.

Professor Herring retired after thirty-six years at the University of Kentucky. He served as chair of the Department of History from 1973-1976 and 1988-1996, and he was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. In 1993, he was a visiting professor at the U.S. Military Academy and in 2001 at the University of Richmond. In 2002, he was awarded the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations’ Norman A. Graebner Prize for distinguished contributions to the field.

Professor Herring’s research centered on U.S. foreign relations. His most recent work is From Colony to Superpower: American Foreign Relations Since 1776, (part of the Oxford History of the United States). His other published works include Aid to Russia, 1941-1946: Strategy, Diplomacy, the Origins of the Cold War; with Thomas M. Campbell, eds., The Diaries of Edward R. Stettinius; America’s Longest War: The United States and Vietnam, 1950-1975; The Secret Diplomacy of the Vietnam War: The “Negotiating Volumes” of the Pentagon Papers; and LBJ and Vietnam: A Different Kind of War. Professor Herring is one of the nation’s foremost experts on the Vietnam War.


Ron Milam is an Associate Professor of Military History at Texas Tech, where he has taught for 7 years. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Houston in 2004. He teaches both halves of the U.S. Survey, the Vietnam War, and graduate and undergraduate courses in military history. His latest teaching interest is terrorism and insurgency, an interest which developed from his having been named an Academic Fellow for the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies. He serves as the Academic Advisor for the annual Vietnam Center sponsored student trips to Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand. He taught “The History of U.S. Foreign Policy” as a Fulbright Scholar to Vietnam in the spring of 2012.

Dr. Milam is the author of Not a Gentleman’s War: an Inside View of Junior Officers in the Vietnam War, published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2009. He also has written numerous articles and chapters on the Vietnam War. He is currently working on two book projects: The Siege of Phu Nhon: Montagnards and Americans as Allies in Battle, which deals with one of the most significant battles in the late days of the Vietnam War, and Cambodia and Kent State: Killing in the Jungle and on the College Campuses, which deals with America’s Incursion into Cambodia in May, 1970 and the subsequent demonstrations that resulted in the murder of college students.

Professor Milam is a member of the Texas Tech Teaching Academy and is the recipient of the President’s Excellence in Teaching Award and the Distinguished Faculty Award presented by Phi Alpha Theta and the History Graduate Student Organization. He also serves as faculty advisor to the Texas Tech Veteran’s Association.

Dr. Milam served as Executive Officer of the Headquarters Company, 1st Brigade, 82d Airborne Division and as an infantry advisor to the Montagnard Soldiers in Pleiku Province, Republic of Vietnam from 1970 to 1971. He is the recipient of the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, the Bronze Star with “V”, the Army Commendation Medal with “V”, the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Bronze Palm, the Bronze Star for Service, and the Parachutists Badge.

Ron is a member of the Texas Tech Vietnam Center Advisory Board, and the Board of Directors of the David Westphall Veterans Foundation, which operates the Vietnam Veterans Memorial State Park in Angel Fire, New Mexico. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Music From Angel Fire Chamber Festival.


Dr. Edwin Moïse received his History at Harvard University in 1967 and his M.A. from Southeast Asian Studies, University of Michigan. In 1977, Edwin obtained his Ph.D. in History, from the University of Michigan. He attended the ROTC Workshop in Military History, U.S.M.A. at West Point in the summer 1982.

Professor Moïse served two years in the U.S. Peace Corps and taught at Appalachian State and the University of Detroit before coming to Clemson in 1979. He teaches courses in Modern China, Modern Japan, and the Vietnam War, as well as a course in Modern Military History. Among his numerous books, Land Reform in China and North Vietnam: Consolidating the Revolution at the Village Level (1983), Modern China: A History (1986), with a second edition in 1994, and a third edition in 2008, Historical Dictionary of the Vietnam War (2001), and Tonkin Gulf and the Escalation of the Vietnam War (1996). His electronic bibliography of the Vietnam War, accessible at his webpage, is a great resource for anyone interested in the topic. In 2002, Dr. Moise was honored with two major university awards: the Alumni Association Distinguished Research Award, and the Provost’s Award for Scholarly Achievement.

Currently, Dr. Moïse is working on a book about the effort of the U.S. government to present a very optimistic picture of progress in the Vietnam War during 1967. A perspective that left the United States unprepared for the magnitude of the Communists’ Tet Offensive in 1968, and led to the ways these events have been remembered and interpreted (often very inaccurately), up to the present. In addition, he is in the process of completing the manuscript of a revised edition of my book on the Tonkin Gulf Incidents, with the intent of publishing it in the near future.


Lindy Poling received her B.A. in History from the College of William and Mary and her M.A.T. from Colgate University. A 35-year veteran educator, she spent her last 27 years teaching history at Millbrook High School. She also served as Social Studies Department Chair from 2005-2010. She has worked with VVMF educational programs since 1999.

Ms. Poling co-authored three Wake County Social Studies curricula: U.S. History, American History Themes and Dreams, and Lessons of Vietnam/Recent International Relations. She has been a contributing author to the following publications: The War and the Wall (VVMF), The VVA Veteran, Homespun: Teaching Local History in Grades 6-12 (Heinemann Press), and NCSS Middle Level Learning. She also authored two major websites: Teacher Guidelines for Linking Students to the Vietnam Era and Best Practices in a Community in the Classroom Social Studies Program. Ms. Poling is the co-author of the 2013 revised edition of VVMF’s Hometown Heroes Service Learning Project ( ), and she actively recruited teachers from across the nation to pilot this program during the 2014 school year.

This dedicated teacher has been nationally recognized for her Community in the Classroom approach to studying history and her Lessons of Vietnam/Recent International Relations course. The Community in the Classroom approach helps students interpret history by seeing it through the eyes of those who experienced it. Students are encouraged to talk with family members about the Vietnam Era, and guest speakers come from North Carolina and across the country. Classroom speakers have included the late Admiral Elmo R. Zumwalt, Jr., General George B, Price, Vice Admiral Emmett Tidd, Medal of Honor Winner Colonel Roger Donlon, LTC James G. Zumwalt, ABC News Chief National Correspondent Byron Pitts, local television news anchor Larry Stogner, former “Donut Dolly” “Larry” Hines, ARVN Air Force Veteran Son Pham and Raleigh City Councilman John Odom. In addition to her visiting speakers, each student is paired with a “link,” someone who has firsthand experience with the Vietnam Era or the War on Terror, for the semester. Students also contribute to a an award-winning quarterly newsletter entitled Bridges ( ) The course culminates with a field trip to Washington, DC, which includes a special visit to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Ms. Poling’s Board associations include: the VVMF Education Advisory Board, the National History Club Advisory Board, the UNC-Chapel Hill Humanities and Human Values Teacher Advisory Committee, and the UNC Project for Historical Education Steering Committtee. She has received numerous honors on the local, state, and national levels, including: National History Club Advisor of the Year (2011 & 2007); Gilder Lehrman North Carolina History Teacher of the Year (2006); USA Today All-USA Teacher First Team (2004); and VFW National Citizenship Education Teacher of the Year (2002).


John Prados heads the [National Security] Archive’s Vietnam and Intelligence Documentation Projects, co-directs its Iraq Documentation Project, and is a Senior Research Fellow on national security affairs, including foreign affairs, intelligence, and military subjects. He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science (International Relations) from Columbia University and has authored many books, most recently, In Country: Remembering the Vietnam War (Rowman & Littlefield, 2012).

His other works include, Normandy Crucible: The Decisive Battle That Shaped World War II in Europe (NAL/Caliber, 2011), Vietnam: The History of an Unwinnable War, winner of the Henry Adams Prize in American History; Safe for Democracy: The Secret Wars of the CIA (Ivan R. Dee Publisher, 2006, paperback 2009); and How the Cold War Ended: Debating and Doing History (Potomac, 2010). Prados is the author of more than twenty books and many articles and papers. His research centers on subjects including the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Vietnam War, and analysis of international relations, plus diplomatic and military history more generally. Additional works include, William Colby and the CIA: The Secret Wars of a Controversial Spymaster (University Press of Kansas), The Hidden History of the Vietnam War and Presidents’ Secret Wars (Ivan Dee); Inside the Pentagon Papers (with Margaret Pratt Porter, Kansas); and Hoodwinked: The Documents that Reveal How Bush Sold Us a War (New Press, 2004). Among his books, Unwinnable War, Keepers of the Keys (on the National Security Council) and Combined Fleet Decoded (on intelligence in the Pacific in World War II) were each nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Combined Fleet Decoded was the winner of the annual book prize of the New York Military Affairs Symposium, and along with his book Valley of Decision: The Siege of Khe Sanh (with Ray W. Stubbe) was named a Notable Naval Book of the Year by the United States Naval Institute. His The Soviet Estimate was awarded the book prize of the Consortium for the Study of Intelligence. Prados’s papers appear in many other works, and his articles have been in Vanity Fair, Scientific American, MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History, Naval History, the Journal of American History, Diplomatic History, Intelligence and National Security, The Journal of National Security Law & Policy, The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the Journal of East-West Studies, Survival, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe and The VVA Veteran.


Ronald Spector (Ph.D, Yale) has been Professor of History and International Relations in the Elliott School of International Affairs, George Washington University since 1990. He previously taught at the University of Alabama and at LSU. Besides his recent book, In the Ruins of Empire he is the author of three other works. His best known books are Eagle Against the Sun: The American War With Japan, which was a main selection of the Book of the Month Club and winner of the Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt Prize in Naval History and After Tet: The Bloodiest Year in Vietnam. His book, At War at Sea: Sailors and Naval Combat in the Twentieth Century received the 2002 Distinguished Book Award of the Society for Military History. Spector has been a Fulbright Lecturer in India, Israel and Singapore and Visiting Professor at The National War College, the Army War College, Keio University in Tokyo and Princeton.

He entered the U.S. Marine Corps as an enlisted man in 1967 and retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Marine Corps Reserve. He served in Vietnam during 1968-69 and in various active duty assignments during the Grenada/Lebanon incidents in 1983-84. He also served on the adjunct faculty of The Marine Corps Command and Staff College. His other government experience includes service as a historian with the U.S. Army Center of Military History and the Naval Historical Center where he was the first civilian to serve as Director of Naval History and Curator for the Navy Department.


Robert K. Sutton assumed the duties of Chief Historian of the National Park Service in October 2007. He came to this position after serving as the Superintendent of Manassas National Battlefield Park for the previous 12 ½ years. From 1986 to 1990, he directed the Historic Preservation and Historical Administration public history programs at Arizona State University. He has published a number of books, articles and reviews on various public history topics. One of his primary interests at Manassas Battlefield and in his current position is preparing for the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War, and as part of that effort, he has encouraged Civil War battlefields to expand their interpretive programs to focus more attention to the social, economic, and political issues during the Civil War Era.