Langhorne A. “Tony” Motley was born 5 June 1938 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He is the former United States Ambassador to Brazil (1981–83) and Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs (1983–85). In this interview, he reflects on growing up in Brazil as the son of an American oil executive who died in an airplane crash when Motley was twelve. A graduate of The Citadel (1960), Motley discusses the hazing he and his classmates experienced and remembers that, “we made a pledge that we weren’t going to do that, and I think we held it up.” While in the Air Force, Motley was stationed at Feltwell in England, Walker Air Force Base in New Mexico, Albrook Air Force Base in Panama, Scott Air Force Base in Illinois, and Elmendorf Air Force Base in Alaska. He resigned from the Air Force in June of 1970 to accept a job in Alaska in real estate development. Subsequent interviews on June 4, 2012 and June 9, 2012 explore Motley’s diplomatic career as well as his ongoing relationship to The Citadel.
This interview is part of The Citadel in War and Peace series.The Citadel prides itself on producing principled and ethical leaders for the military, as well as in business and civic affairs. The Citadel in War and Peace traces the life histories and career trajectories of alumni, staff, and faculty to better understand the university’s multifaceted contributions to the U.S. national security and its continuing impact on the business and politics of South Carolina and the nation. An initial series of interviews focuses on Citadel alumni who served in World War II. It spotlights their combat experiences and recounts their return to civilian life and subsequent professional careers.