Chief Marshal Ralph Browne is veteran of Korean War, civic leadership

Elizabeth Murray, Special to the Reporter
May. 31, 2012

After a long record of participation in civic activities, Dorchester resident Ralph Browne Jr. will serve as this year’s Dorchester Day Parade Chief Marshal.

Browne has lived in Dorchester for the last 40 years in Upham's Corner and was born and raised in the greater Boston area. He and his wife of 60 years, Wilma, have seven children, eleven grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Browne served in the United States Army during the Korean War with the 272nd Field Artillery Battalion of the Massachusetts National Guards, the last all-African-American military unit to be activated for service during that war. Upon his separation from military service, he was employed by the United States Air Force.

During his time in Dorchester, Browne served as the President of the 272nd Veterans Association and the Organization of Afro-American Veterans, was the Affirmative Action Officer for the Ward 15 Democratic Committee and Dorchester’s Representative on the City of Boston Mayor’s Advisory Committee.

He has served as Commander of the William E. Carter Post in Mattapan and as the president of both the Meetinghouse Hill Civics Association and the Dorchester Allied Neighborhood Association.

This year marks Browne’s debut as Chief Marshal of the Dorchester Day Parade.

“It’s indeed an honor,” Browne said. “It’s a great tradition. Many have come before me, and I’m really honored to be one this year.”