- Associated Press - Saturday, May 6, 2017

BLUE MOUNTAIN, Miss. (AP) - Graduates at Baptist affiliated Blue Mountain College are being saluted by the retired commander of the Mississippi National Guard.

Augustus Collins, now CEO of worker training company MINACT, is speaking to two commencement ceremonies Saturday on the college’s northeast Mississippi campus.

Collins was the first African American to be named a general in the history of the Mississippi National Guard and, in 2012, became the first African American to command the state’s Army and Air National Guard. He commanded more than 4,500 soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines in Iraq from 2004 to 2006

Blue Mountain College is presenting degrees to 138 graduates.

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