Leodis T. “Juice” Jennings

Leodis T. “Juice” Jennings

Brigadier General (Retired) Leodis T. Jennings (Materials Science and Engineering ’83), fondly known as “Juice” to his family, friends and colleagues, was born in Detroit, Michigan, and raised in High Point, North Carolina. While at NC State, Juice balanced a rigorous engineering curriculum with numerous extracurricular activities including an active Greek life, vice president of the Eta Omicron Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and president of Greeks United, an African American Panhellenic organization on campus. He was a member of the NC State marching band and the Reserved Officer Training Corps (ROTC), where he earned his commission in the United States Army. The journey to complete his degree at NC State was not easy. In 1975 he left NC State temporarily and was told by many, “You will never come back… you will never finish.” However, he persevered, returning to NC State after five years of enlisted service in the Army. He completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Materials Engineering with a concentration in Metallurgy in 1983.

At graduation, Juice received a commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army National Guard as an Armor Officer. In addition to his NC State education, Juice earned a Master of Arts degree in International Business from Webster University in 1994, Master of Military Art and Science from the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, in 1996, and Master of Science in Strategic Studies from the Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, in 2002.

Later in his career, while serving in the Pentagon and the National Capital Region, his leadership and problem-solving skills were highly sought after. He was often consulted by leaders in the Army National Guard, the Army, the Joint Staff (including the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff), the Department of Defense, and the United States Congress.

Before his retirement, Brigadier Gen. Jennings’ last assignment was as the Military Deputy to the Deputy Chief of Staff G-8, Headquarters Department of the Army. Paramount among his duties was ensuring a balanced strategy for resourcing and equipping across all three active Army components while adjudicating flag-level overseas contingency operations involving deployed and/or deploying forces. He managed more than $650 billion in resources and equipment in this capacity.


In addition to his professional excellence, Juice always made time for his alma mater. He served on the NC State University Board of Visitors and the external advisory board for his home department, Materials Science and Engineering. For over 25 years Juice was passionate in his support of the Dr. Augustus M. Witherspoon scholarship program. Primarily through his fundraising efforts and donations, the Witherspoon scholarship has seen an infusion of over $250,000. Juice is a staunch supporter of NC State. You can find him at Wolfpack football games, basketball games or alumni events in the Virginia and Washington, DC, areas.

When asked why he was interested in establishing this scholarship, Juice said it was “My duty to help pave the way for future generations, like me.” That belief motivates him to “pay it forward” with this scholarship. Ultimately, he hopes that scholarship recipients will persevere and seize the opportunity to participate in leadership roles, on- and off-campus, that will prepare them to make a difference in the world. Scholarships help lessen the financial burden for NC State students, and Juice desires to be part of that solution.