Lieutenant General (Dr.) Edgar Ratcliffe Anderson, Jr. was born in Baton Rouge on March 13, 1940. He was educated in the private, parochial and public schools in Baton Rouge and attended LSU from 1957 to 1960 and was a member of Kappa Alpha Order. He received his MD from LSU School of Medicine in New Orleans in June 1964. Following Internship at Philadelphia General Hospital where he was President of his Internship class, he entered the United States Air Force. In 1969, he was selected for the USAF Pilot Physician Program. Upon completion, he received the Flying Training Award, the Officer Training Award and the Commander’s Trophy as the top graduate. He subsequently was awarded the Orville Wright Award by the Order of Daedalians as the number one graduate of all Air Force Pilot Training of the Quarter in 1971. Following Combat Crew Training in the F-4E Phantom II, then Major Anderson was assigned to the 336 Tactical Fighter Squadron, Seymour Johnson AB, North Carolina and won Top Gun honors in November 1971. He deployed with his squadron to Ubon RTAFB, Thailand in April 1972 and is credited with 97 combat missions in Southeast Asia.
Following successive assignments as a Pilot/Flight Surgeon and Hospital Commander, Dr. Anderson continued his medical education with residency training in Dermatology and a fellowship in Dermatologic Surgery. He has been certified by the American Boards of Family Practice, Dermatology and Preventive Medicine.
He was later selected for the USAF/RAF Exchange Program and served as a Medical Test Pilot at the Institute of Aviation Medicine at RAF Farnborough flying the Hawker Hunter jet fighter. In 1983, the Anderson Family returned to Langley AFB, VA where then Colonel Anderson served as Commander of the Regional Hospital and Deputy Surgeon of Tactical Air Command and flew the F-15 Eagle.
In October 1994, he was assigned as Command Surgeon, Pacific Air Forces in Honolulu with responsibility for all Air Force Medical Operations in that theater. In 1995, he was promoted to Brigadier General and assigned to Strategic Air Command in Omaha, again as Command Surgeon. In 1990, he was promoted to Major General and assigned as Commander of Wilford Hall USAF Medical Center in San Antonio, the largest hospital in the Department of Defense at that time. In September 1994, he was promoted to Lieutenant General and served as the USAF Surgeon General until his retirement on January 1, 1997. His military decorations include two Distinguished Service Medals, two Distinguished Flying Crosses and ten Air Medals. Citing his reputation for integrity, the AMA awarded Dr. Anderson its prestigious Dr. Nathan Davis Award as “The Outstanding Member of the Federal Executive Branch in Career Public Service” for 1996.
Following retirement, he served as Dean of Medicine at the University of Missouri – Kansas City, CEO of the American Medical Association in Chicago and Professor of Medicine at Loyola University (Stritch) School of Medicine. He is currently President and Chairman, Veteran’s Health and serves on a number of boards. General Anderson is married to the former Sandra Caston of Fayetteville, NC. They have three children, Melisa Caston, Major (Dr.) E. Ratcliffe Anderson, III and Mark M. Anderson and two grandchildren, E. Ratcliffe Anderson, IV and Elizabeth Vaughn Anderson.