Darwin H. Simpson began his 39-year military career in the Arkansas Army National Guard in 1964. In 1967, Simpson graduated from the Army’s OCS program and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant. Throughout his career, Major General Simpson has held numerous staff and Command assignments including Commanding General of the 228th Signal Brigade in Spartanburg, South Carolina and Commanding General of the 263rd Army Air and Missile Defense Command in Anderson, South Carolina. His awards include the Legion of Merit, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, and South Carolina’s Order of the Palmetto.
After retiring from military leadership and a career as a chemical company executive, Simpson served as Director of Spartanburg Downtown Memorial Airport on a voluntary basis from February 2009 through September 2017.
Simpson oversaw an extensive revitalization of many of the airport’s facilities, including renovation and expansion of the airport terminal and runway improvements and extension. Spartanburg Downtown Memorial Airport serves today as one of South Carolina’s premier general aviation airports and is a crucial economic development and job creation catalyst, helping to drive private investment in the Spartanburg community.
Simpson has been flying for more than 55 years, with more than 7,000 hours of flight time. He was recognized with FAA’s Master Pilot Award for more than 50 years of contributions to further the cause of aviation safety. Simpson previously represented District 4 on the South Carolina Aeronautics Commission.
On June 25, 2018, the airfield of Spartanburg Downtown Memorial Airport was named in Simpson’s honor for his outstanding and lifelong contributions to his country and his decades of service to Spartanburg.