Mel Bauman was born in 1945 in Detroit. He served in the United States Army and Army Reserve from 1965 to 2005, thus completing a forty-year military career. Bauman enlisted in the Army in 1965 and rose to the rank of First Sergeant. In 1980, he was commissioned as a captain in the Army Reserve. During his civilian career with the Army Reserve, Bauman served as a Supply Technician, Supervisor and Staff Administrator, and Training Assistant for various Army Reserve commands. During his military career, Colonel Bauman served in various positions of responsibility, including Commander of a public affairs unit and a provisional battalion, and as Deputy Commander for an Area Support Group.
Bauman has served his community, state, and country in many capacities, from his decades-long military service to his various civic endeavors, most notably as Chair of the Kent County Veterans Services Advisory Committee, Commander of the United Veterans Council of Kent County, the senior Army Reserve Ambassador for Michigan, and State Chair of the Michigan Committee for Employer Support for Guard & Reserve (for which he received the Office of the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service). Colonel Bauman’s advice and counsel is frequently sought by veterans-service groups throughout the community.