David J. Campanale

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Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force
David J. Campanale
CMSAF David J. Campanale
11th Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force (1994-1996)
Born (1952-10-07) October 7, 1952 (age 62)
Flag of Massachusetts.svg Worcester, Massachusetts
Allegiance United States United States
Service/branch  United States Air Force
Years of service 1970 - 1997 (27 years)
Rank
Battles/wars Vietnam War
Awards See below

Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force David J. Campanale (born October 7, 1952) was the eleventh person appointed to the highest noncommissioned officer position in the United States Air Force.

Military career[edit]

Chief Campanale was born in Worcester, Massachusetts. He graduated from North High School and entered the Air Force in October 1970. He completed technical training as an aircraft maintenance specialist at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas. In February 1971, he was assigned as a B-52 Stratofortress crew chief in the 2nd Organization Maintenance Squadron, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana. While there, he completed three successive tours at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, in support of B-52 Operation Arc Light missions in Southeast Asia. His career includes tours at bases in Indiana, Hawaii, New Hampshire, and Nebraska. He served as Senior Enlisted Advisor to the 93rd Bomb Wing, Castle Air Force Base, California; and Air Mobility Command, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois.

CMSAF Campanale served as the Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force from October 1994 to November 1996. He retired from active duty effective January 1, 1997. He now resides in southern Arizona and frequently speaks at Air Force gatherings.

His most notable contributions during his time as CMSAF include a push for single dorm occupancy, which led to the current dorm single occupancy policy, and a reduction of DUI incidents at Castle Air Force Base in 1 year from over 190, to less than 5.

Chief Campanale also fought a uniform change which removed name tapes and rank insignia from the battle dress uniform. The Air Force swapped for a short time to a single black label worn over the left breast pocket which contained text including the rank, name, and position of the invidiual. Disagreeing with this change, Chief Campanale said, "To prove my point, I had the secretary of a 3-star General remove the stars [rank insignia] from the Generals' BDU collar, then affixed the black label over his nametape as would be worn by everyone else. I then challenged that if he were to walk with me around the base, nobody would salute or render courtesies, since they couldn't read it. He accepted my challenge, and after about an hour of walking, someone finally recognized the General and said, "Hey.. aren't you General so and so?"" Within a few weeks, the black patch was being phased out, and the rank insignia/name tapes were on the way back in.[1]

Chief Campanale was accused of being a personal friend of a Bataan POW impostor, whom he was promoting for an NCO of the year type award. Despite being advised of serious discrepancies in the impostor's story and credentials, Chief Campanale dismissed all allegations. After Chief Campanale was replaced by Chief Beneken the matter was re‑assessed.[2] Since then the US government has introduced the Stolen Valor Act.

Assignments[edit]

  1. October 1970 - December 1970, Basic Military Training, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas
  2. December 1970 - February 1971, student, technical training, Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas
  3. February 1971 - April 1974, B-52 Stratofortress crew chief, 2nd Organizational Maintenance Squadron, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana.
  4. April 1974 - August 1978, 305th Field Maintenance Squadron, Grissom Air Force Base, Indiana.
  5. August 1978 - August 1983, C-130 Hercules crew chief; noncommissioned officer in charge, C-130 inspection branch; and maintenance superintendent, 6594th Test Group, Air Force Systems Command, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii
  6. August 1983 - August 1986, FB-111A and KC-135 Stratotanker flight chief and line chief, 509th Organizational Maintenance Squadron; and senior maintenance controller for the deputy commander for maintenance, 509th Bomb Wing, Pease Air Force Base, New Hampshire.
  7. August 1986 - May 1989, FB-111A and B-1B Lancer systems program manager, Headquarters Strategic Air Command, - Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska.
  8. May 1989 - February 1992, senior enlisted adviser, 93rd Bomb Wing, Castle Air Force Base, Calif.
  9. February 1992 - October 1994, senior enlisted adviser, Military Airlift Command and Air Mobility Command, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois.
  10. October 1994 - November 1996, Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, The Pentagon, Washington, D.C.

Awards and Decorations[edit]

USAF - Master Maintenance Badge.png Master Maintenance Badge
Personal decorations
Air Force Distinguished Service Medal
Width-44 crimson ribbon with a pair of width-2 white stripes on the edges Legion of Merit
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Width-44 crimson ribbon with two width-8 white stripes at distance 4 from the edges.
Meritorious Service Medal with two bronze oak leaf clusters
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Air Force Commendation Medal with two bronze oak leaf clusters
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Air Force Achievement Medal with bronze oak leaf cluster
Unit awards
V
Silver oak leaf cluster
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor device and silver oak leaf cluster
Air Force Organizational Excellence Award
Service awards
Silver oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Air Force Good Conduct Medal with silver and three bronze oak leaf clusters
Campaign and service medals
Bronze star
Width=44 scarlet ribbon with a central width-4 golden yellow stripe, flanked by pairs of width-1 scarlet, white, Old Glory blue, and white stripes
National Defense Service Medal with service star
Vietnam Service Medal
Service, training, and marksmanship awards
Air Force Overseas Short Tour Service Ribbon
Air Force Overseas Long Tour Service Ribbon
Silver oak leaf cluster
Air Force Longevity Service Award with silver oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
NCO Professional Military Education Graduate Ribbon with two oak leaf clusters
Bronze star
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon with service star
Air Force Training Ribbon
Foreign awards
Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Award
Vietnam Campaign Medal

Other achievements[edit]

  • Graduate, U.S. Air Force Senior NCO Academy
  • Distinguished Graduate and Speech Awards, Pacific Air Forces NCO Leadership School
  • Commandant's Award and Distinguished Graduate, Military Airlift Command NCO Academy

Effective dates of promotion[edit]

Promotions
Rank Date
E9d USAF CMSAF old.svg Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force October 26, 1994

Succession[edit]

Military offices
Preceded by
Gary R. Pfingston
Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force
1994–1996
Succeeded by
Eric W. Benken

References[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Air Force document "Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force David J. Campanale biography".