William P. Bowden was commissioned in the Air Force through ROTC, and served as a navigator and bombardier on B-52 bombers during the Vietnam War. He served in numerous staff and command positions, concluding his duty as the commanding general of Tinker Air Force Base. Gen.
Bowden is a leading citizen of Oklahoma. Following military retirement, he worked with the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce in economic development, the Kirkpatrick Center museum complex as executive director and the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education. He was a Regent at Rose State College, president of the Last Frontier Boy Scout Council and a member of the Advisory Board of the American Citizenship Center at Oklahoma Christian University. He is past president of the Rotary Club of Oklahoma and past commander of the Oklahoma City chapter of the Military Order of the World Wars.