Board of Directors
Veterans History Museum of the Carolinas Board of Directors
David Morrow, President
David is a Brevard NC native who served in Vietnam as a member of Seabee Team 0517 in 1970. He earned a Bachelor of Civil Engineering Technology from Southern Technical Institute in 1972 and is a Partner in Newbanks & Company as a construction consultant for lenders. He is a founding board member of the Veterans History Museum of the Carolinas.
Emmett Casciato, Past President, Founder, and Curator
Emmett was born in Pittsburgh and attended Salem College on an athletic scholarship, earning a degree in 1971. He retired from teaching and coaching after 28 years when he began collecting the military artifacts which are currently exhibited in the Veterans History Museum of the Carolinas. Emmett embodies a lifelong commitment to honor the men and women who serve our country in the military.
Ken Corn, Vice President
Ken served as an embedded photojournalist in Iraq in 2003. He landed in Kuwait three days before Operation Iraqi Freedom began, traveled over the border into Iraq with the 37th Engineering Battalion from Fort Bragg, and convoyed 900 miles up the Tigris River to Mosul, Iraq. With this glimpse of military life in a war zone, he continues to honor veterans. Assuring that our veterans are remembered through his photography is just one way he honors those who fought and died for our freedom.
Phil Davis, Secretary
Born and raised in West Virginia, Phil graduated in 1970 from WVU in Aerospace Engineering. Upon graduation he was commissioned via ROTC in the US Army. He served on active duty, reserves and Indiana National Guard in Air Defense Artillery Nike, Hercules missiles and Field Artillery, 105mm towed howitzers. Phil worked as a test engineer and as a turbine section designer for Allison Div. of General Motors in Indianapolis, IN. He worked in three companies with increasing responsibilities before retiring as a V.P. of Engineering in 2011.
Michel Robertson, Director of Finance
A native of the Chicago area, Michel graduated from Smith College and received her MBA at the University of South Florida. She owned Accountability Businesses Systems until her retirement in 2017. Michel volunteers her accounting and financial services on several local boards. Her experience includes Consultant and Technical Editor for Booz Allen Hamilton; District Sales Manager, Hershey Chocolate Company, and an accountant for Smith & Fuller, P.A. She recently published Welcome Home, Brother—Memoirs of Vietnam War Veterans.
Janis Allen, Director of Communications
Janis is the owner of Performance Leadership Consulting, training supervisors, managers, and employee teams in performance improvement techniques. Some of her clients include BMW Manufacturing, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, 3M, Xerox, Eastman Kodak, International Paper, American Airlines, Department of the Army, and United Airlines. She has published eight business books and a history: “We Shall Come Home Victorious.” Stories of WWII Veterans.
Carl Newman, Director of Business Planning and Analysis
A native of NJ, Carl served in the U.S. Army from 1965 to 1968 during the Vietnam Era. After an honorable discharge, he earned bachelor and master degrees at night school on the GI Bill. He was employed in financial and business management for Tenneco and Becton Dickinson for more than 25 years. In order to honor deceased veterans, he participates as a proud member of the Transylvania County Honor Guard.
Thomas Bugala, Curator
Tom served in the US Air Force for eleven years as an Avionics Technician servicing all models of the F-16 Fighting Falcon. He currently is continuing his 40-year career in aviation maintenance as a Lead Technician at the Asheville Regional Airport working for Allegiant Airlines. A lifelong interest in military history began at an early age, inspired by his father — a history teacher and military collector. Tom is the proud owner of LuLu the Jeep, parade participant and official mascot of the Veterans History Museum of the Carolinas.
Larry Chapman, Director
Larry is a native of Transylvania County and was first elected to the Board of Commissioners in November 2010, office, a position he currently holds. After graduation from Western Carolina University, he entered the U.S. Marine Corps and was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant Infantry officer. He remained in the Marine Corps Reserves, retiring as a Colonel with more than 30 years’ service. Larry worked at the former Ecusta paper mill for more than 27 years in manufacturing supervision and marketing management. He retired in 2017 as Vice President of Sales.
Michael Di Rocco, Director
Mike began his military career as a US Marine in 1954, serving as a tank commander and Italian interpreter for the Mediterranean Sixth Fleet. In 1960, Mike joined the US Army Special Forces and for the next thirteen years served three tours in Vietnam primarily in clandestine Special Operations and other capacities. Mike is retired and lives in Brevard, NC.
John Flynn, Director
A graduate of St. John’s University, NY, with a B.S. in Accounting, John enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in West Germany 3rd Armor Div. (S) H.Q. Drake Kaserne from 1968 to 1970. He joined IBM, working in accounting and finance operations over a 22-year career. After early retirement, John went to FLETC, Glynco, GA, where he worked in Federal Law Enforcement. After a second retirement in 2007, he moved to Brevard, NC, where he is a proud member of the Knights of Columbus, American Legion, and other charitable organizations.