JoAnne S. Bass

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JoAnne S. Bass
CMSgt JoAnne S. Bass.jpg
CMSAF JoAnne S. Bass in 2020
BornMililani, Hawaii
AllegianceUnited States
Service/branchUnited States Air Force
Years of service1993–present
RankChief Master Sergeant of the Air Force
Battles/warsIraq War
AwardsLegion of Merit
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal (5)
Joint Service Commendation Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal (3)
Air Force Achievement Medal (3)

JoAnne S. Bass (/bæs/) is a senior noncommissioned officer in the United States Air Force and the nineteenth Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force. She became the Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, and the first female senior enlisted service member of any United States military branch, on August 14, 2020,[1] having been selected for the position on June 19.[2] She is also the first person of Asian-American descent to hold the senior enlisted position in the Air Force.[3] At the time of her selection, she was the Second Air Force's Command Chief Master Sergeant at Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi, which she had reported to in July 2018.[4] Air Force News reported "incoming Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown said Bass brings skills, temperament and experience that the job requires and an outlook on leadership that meshes with his own", and that he "could not be more excited to work side-by-side with Chief Bass."[2]

Early life[edit]

Bass is originally from Mililani, Oahu, Hawaii.[5] Her mother is of Korean descent and her father is a retired United States Army colonel. Her family lived in many stateside and overseas locations.[3]

Military career[edit]

Bass joined the United States Air Force in 1993, specializing in aviation resource management. Bass's first duty assignment was at Pope Air Force Base, near Fayetteville, North Carolina. Later she was assigned to the 17th Training Wing at Goodfellow Air Force Base, near San Angelo, Texas.[2] In 2011, while assigned to Ramstein Air Base in Germany, she was selected as Noncommissioned Officer of the Year.[1] She has participated in Operation Southern Watch, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Iraqi Freedom.[5]

Bass was promoted to chief master sergeant on August 1, 2013,[6] and to chief master sergeant of the Air Force on August 14, 2020.[1]



  1. June 1993 – June 1996, Operations System Management Journeyman, 74th Fighter Squadron, Pope Air Force Base, North Carolina[6]
  2. June 1996 – July 1998, Range Scheduling Specialist, 43rd Operations Support Squadron, Pope Air Force Base, North Carolina
  3. July 1998 – November 2000, Noncommissioned Officer in Charge, Current Operations Scheduler, 24th Special Tactics Squadron, Fort Bragg, North Carolina
  4. November 2000 – March 2001, Current Operations Scheduler, 86th Operational Support Squadron, Ramstein Air Base, Germany
  5. March 2001 – January 2004, Noncommissioned Officer in Charge, Special Airlift Operations, Air Mobility Operations Control Center, Ramstein Air Base, Germany
  6. January 2004 – November 2005, Noncommissioned Officer in Charge, Host Aviation Resource Management, 86th Operational Support Squadron, Ramstein Air Base, Germany
  7. November 2005 – August 2010, Superintendent, Host Aviation Resource Management, Group Career Field Functional Manager, (Data Masked)
  8. August 2010 – September 2012, Superintendent, Host Aviation Resource Management and Superintendent, 86th Operations Support Squadron, Ramstein Air Base, Germany
  9. September 2012 – May 2015, Superintendent, 86th Operations Group, Ramstein Air Base, Germany
  10. May 2015 – September 2016, Command Chief Master Sergeant, 17th Training Wing, Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas
  11. September 2016 – July 2018, Chief, Air Force Enlisted Developmental Education, The Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
  12. July 2018 – August 2020, Command Chief Master Sergeant, Second Air Force, Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi
  13. August 2020 – present, Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, The Pentagon, Washington, D.C.

Awards and decorations[edit]

WepsDirector.jpgUnited States Air Force Command and Control Badge.svg Air Force Master Command and Control Badge
Headquarters US Air Force Badge.png Headquarters Air Force Badge
Personal decorations
Width-44 crimson ribbon with a pair of width-2 white stripes on the edges Legion of Merit[7]
Defense Meritorious Service Medal[6]
Width-44 crimson ribbon with two width-8 white stripes at distance 4 from the edges.Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Meritorious Service Medal with four bronze oak leaf clusters[6]
Joint Service Commendation Medal[6]
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters[6]
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Air Force Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters[6]
Unit awards
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with three oak leaf clusters
Service awards
Combat Readiness Medal
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgSilver oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Air Force Good Conduct Medal with one silver and three bronze oak leaf clusters
Air Force Good Conduct Medal (second ribbon to denote tenth award)
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 one bronze campaign star
Bronze star
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with bronze service star
Bronze star
Southwest Asia Service Medal with bronze service star
Bronze star
Iraq Campaign Medal with bronze service star
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Service, training, and marksmanship awards
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Air Force Overseas Long Tour Service Ribbon with oak leaf cluster
Silver oak leaf cluster
Air Force Longevity Service Award with silver oak leaf cluster
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg NCO Professional Military Education Graduate Ribbon with two oak leaf clusters
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon
Air Force Training Ribbon

Other achievements[edit]

  • 1995 Airman of the Year, 74th Fighter Squadron[6]
  • 1997 John L. Levitow Award, Airman Leadership School
  • 2004 Distinguished Graduate, Noncommissioned Officer Academy
  • 2009 Distinguished Graduate, Senior Noncommissioned Officer Academy
  • 2010 USAFE Senior Noncommissioned Officer Aviation Resource Manager of the Year
  • 2011 Senior Noncommissioned Officer of the Year, 86th Operations Group


  1. ^ a b c Casiano, Louis (19 June 2020). "Air Force names first woman as top noncommissioned officer of any US military branch". Foxnews. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  2. ^ a b c Pope, Charles (19 June 2020). "Chief Master Sgt. JoAnne S. Bass named 19th Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force". Air Force News. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  3. ^ a b Losey, Stephen (19 June 2020). "CMSgt JoAnne Bass to become first woman to serve as chief master sergeant of the Air Force". Air Force Times. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  4. ^ Flores, Jessica (21 June 2020). "Air Force chooses JoAnne Bass as first woman to serve as top enlisted leader: 'The history of the moment isn't lost on me'". USA Today. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Mililani woman makes Air Force history as top enlisted leader". Star Advertiser via Associated Press. 19 June 2020. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Chief Master Sergeant Joanne S. Bass". Second Air Force. July 2018. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  7. ^ "Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Joanne S. Bass". United States Air Force. 14 August 2020. Retrieved 14 August 2020.

 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Air Force document: "JoAnne S. Bass, USAF biography".

Military offices
Preceded by
Kaleth O. Wright
Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force