Retired July 1, 1981.
Brigadier General (Dr.) James F. Culver is the Air Force deputy surgeon general for operations and commander of the Air Force Medical Service Center at Brooks Air Force Base, Texas.
General Culver was born in Macon, Ga., in 1921, where he attended elementary and secondary schools. He received his premedical education at Virginia Military Institute, Lexington and Mercer University, Macon. He was awarded his doctor of medicine degree by the University of Georgia School of Medicine in 1945. He also has a master of science degree in political science from Auburn (Ala.) University. He has completed Squadron Officer School, Air Command and Staff College and Air War College, all located at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. He has also completed the Special Weapons Course at the U.S. Naval Medical School, Treasure Island, Calif., and the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, D.C.
He was commissioned a first lieutenant in the Army Air Forces following graduation from medical school in 1945. He completed rotating internship at Macon General Hospital in 1946 and served two years on active duty as a member of the surgical staff at Pratt General Hospital in Coral Gables, Fla.
As a reservist he completed postgraduate work at the Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago. He then served residencies in ophthalmology at Wesley Memorial Hospital and Passavant Memorial Hospital, both located in Chicago, from January 1950 to January 1952. He was a fellow in Ophthalmology at Northwestern University School of Medicine from January 1951 to January 1952 and was named a diplomate of the American Board of Ophthalmology in 1953.
From 1952 to 1959, General Culver was in private practice in Watsonville, Calif. In 1959 he accepted a regular commission in the Air Force and attended the primary course in aviation medicine at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas.
From 1959 to 1966, General Culver was chief of ophthalmology and senior instructor in ophthalmology at the U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine at Brooks Air Force Base. While there General Culver was selected as a member of the Bioastronautics Task Force in support of the Mercury and Gemini projects of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. He also performed preflight and postflight ophthalmological examinations of U.S. astronauts since the first U.S. suborbital flight in 1961.
The following two years he served as assistant director of research and development for the Aerospace Medical Division at Brooks. After graduation from the Air War College as a distinguished graduate in 1969, General Culver was assigned to the U.S. Air Force surgeon general's office in Washington, D.C., as chief of the Medical Research Group-Biotechnology Office and consultant to the surgeon general in ophthalmology. In June 1973 he was assigned as commander of the Air Force clinic at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii, and in July 1975 became command surgeon for Headquarters Pacific Air Forces. He assumed his present duties in April 1980.
He is a member of the American Medical Association, the Aerospace Medical Association, the Texas Medical Association and the Bexar County Medical Association. He is also a diplomate of the American Board of Opthalmology, a fellow of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, fellow of the Society of Eye Surgeons and fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine. He has been the Air Force member of the Executive Council of the Armed Forces-National Research Committee on Vision of the National Academy of Sciences. He served on the Air Force Vision Committee; the Advisory Group for Aerospace Research and Development for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization on the Aerospace Medical Panel; and the Nuclear Weapons Effects Group, Biomedical Panel of the Defense Atomic Support Agency.
General Culver chaired the Aerospace Medical Panel for the Advisory Group for Aerospace Research and Development-NATO from 1972 to 1974. He was also president of the Space Medicine Branch of the Aerospace Medical Association.
He holds the aeronautical rating of chief flight surgeon with more than 2,000 flying hours. His military decorations and awards include the Legion of Merit, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award ribbon, Good Conduct Medal, World War II Victory Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Air Force Longevity Service Award ribbon and Armed Forces Reserve Medal.
At the 1966 Annual Scientific Meeting of the Aerospace Medical Association, he was presented the Arnold D. Tuttle Award for outstanding contributions to the solution of the problem of the relationship of ocular disease to the qualification for flying and aerospace duties.
General Culver has authored approximately 50 papers on experimental and clinical ophthalmology with emphasis in the areas of ocular effects of radiation, retinal burns, flashblindness, glaucoma and aerospace medicine.
He was promoted to brigadier general Feb. 4, 1980, with date of rank Jan. 28, 1980.