Lieutenant General William E. Potts, US Army (1922–2005) was a 1941 distinguished cadet and graduate of the Oklahoma Military Academy (now Rogers State College) who won the coveted Honor School Appointment to the US Military Academy. Because of the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, he declined the appointment and went directly into the US Army with his commission.
At 22 years old, while serving in Third Army, General George Smith Patton, Jr., awarded him a battlefield appointment to major in recognition of his leadership as a battalion commander during the Lorraine, France Campaign. He was seriously wounded during the fighting in France.
After World War II he commanded the 72nd Tank Battalion in the Korean War and served five years in Vietnam. After his last tour in Vietnam he served as the US Army's Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence and as Deputy Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency.
During his military career he participated in 15 campaigns and was awarded 51 medals and decorations to include the Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star, Purple Heart and the French National Order of the Legion of Honor. He is an inductee in the Military Intelligence Hall of Fame.