Col. Ivan Denton enlisted in 1982 as an infantryman in the Indiana Army National Guard. In 1986, he received his commission and graduated from Indiana University, where he was a distinguished military graduate and recipient of the prestigious George C. Marshal Leadership Award. COL Denton later attended Army War College, where he received a Master’s Degree in Strategic Studies.
During his four years as an Army active duty infantry officer, COL Denton served in the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea with the 2nd Infantry Division and acted as a Ranger rifle platoon leader during Operation Just Cause in Panama with the 75th Ranger Regiment.
He left active duty in 1990 and rejoined the Indiana Army National Guard. His command and staff assignments include: Rifle Company Commander, Battalion Adjutant, Battalion Operations Officer, Deputy Division Operations Officer, Infantry Battalion Commander, Recruiting Battalion Commander, Director of Army Personnel, and 219th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade Commander.
In 2003, as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom, COL Denton took command of the 1-293rd infantry battalion, which was the first reserve component infantry battalion to be forwardly deployed into a combat theatre since the Korean War. Most recently he led the 219th BfSB on the last Indiana National Guard rotation in support of Operation of New Dawn.
He has numerous badges and awards to include the Ranger Tab, Combat Infantryman’s Badge (2nd Award), Legion of Merit, and Bronze Star (2nd Award).