Combat veteran to share experience of being gay in the military July 19

July 12, 2018

The St. Peter’s Episcopal Church Summer Spirituality Series will feature Chaplain (Col.) Karis K. Graham, a U.S. Air Force veteran, at 7 p.m., Thursday, July 19, in the parish hall. She will speak on her experiences of being a gay woman in the military.

Graham served in the U.S. Navy and then the U.S. Air Force from 1986 to 2017. Shortly after Sept. 11, 2001, she returned to active duty with the U.S. Air Force. Graham split her career, spending half as a traditional reservist and half on active duty as an individual mobilization augmentee with the Office of the Chaplain, Air Force District of Washington.

Among her many assignments, Graham served with the Air Force chief of chaplains at the Pentagon, as a wing chaplain in Niagara Falls, N.Y., and with the 11th Operations Group conducting burial services at Arlington National Cemetery.  She also was assigned to the 501st Combat Support Wing of the Royal Air Force in the United Kingdom. She has been recognized for her combat action in Kuwait, Desert Storm and Iraq, and received three meritorious commendation medals for her Air Force duty and two commendation medals for Navy service.

In her civilian capacity, Graham is a pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America and works with many congregations as an interim pastor.  She is also a career civil servant and senior executive service career development program graduate with the Department of the Interior.  Graham also served as deputy director of the Iraq and Arabian Peninsula Office, Middle East Bureau, within the U.S. Agency for International Development. Prior to that role, she served as a Department of Defense social scientist and team leader in the Khost and Paktika provinces in Afghanistan.

As a combat veteran of three wars, Graham is also now an author with the Warrior Writers Organization based in Pennsylvania.


This event is free and open to the public. The parish hall is at 211 Mulberry St. in Lewes. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.