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|Birth name||Mark Anthony Welsh III|
January 26, 1953 |
San Antonio, Texas, U.S.
|Service/branch||United States Air Force|
|Years of service||1976–2016|
|Commands held||Chief of Staff of the Air Force
U.S. Air Forces in Europe
Allied Air Command Ramstein
Joint Air Power Competence Center
|Battles/wars||Persian Gulf War|
Mark Anthony Welsh III (born January 26, 1953) is a retired United States Air Force officer whose last assignment before retiring was as the 20th Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force. He was born in San Antonio, Texas, and entered the United States Air Force in June 1976 as a graduate of the US Air Force Academy. He retired after over 40 years of service on July 1, 2016, when he was relieved by General David L. Goldfein.
Prior to his current assignment, he served as the 34th Commander, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Commander, Allied Air Command Ramstein, Germany, and Director, Joint Air Power Competence Center at Kalkar, Germany, from December 13, 2010, to July 31, 2012. He was responsible for Air Force activities, conducted through 3rd Air Force, in an area of operations covering almost one-fifth of the globe. This area includes 51 countries in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and the Arctic and Atlantic oceans with a total population reaching nearly one billion people speaking more than 80 languages. He also had administrative control of 17th Air Force, providing support, logistics and resources to U.S. Africa Command.
Welsh previously served as Associate Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for Military Support and Associate Director for Military Affairs, Central Intelligence Agency, Washington, D.C., from August 2008 to December 2010. As the ADMA, he served as the principal advisor to the Director of the CIA on military matters and was the primary bridge between the CIA and the Department of Defense for the coordination and planning of military and interagency operations. Additionally, he assisted in the formulation of CIA policies regarding military affairs, managed the provision of direct support to deployed forces, and oversaw the Director of CIA representation at the combatant commands and senior service schools.
In May 2012, Welsh was nominated by President Barack Obama to be the next Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force. On July 19, 2012, Welsh testified in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee at his confirmation hearing. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate and was sworn in as the Chief of Staff of the Air Force in August 2012.
In 2013, Welsh said that the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II could not be expected to survive in future combat so should be retired in favor of the General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon, which he also said could not be expected to survive in future combat. Welsh believes that the USAF accomplishes the CAS mission "better than anyone" actually does.
- 1972 Wentworth Military Academy and College, Lexington, Missouri
- 1976 Bachelor of Science degree, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado
- 1984 Squadron Officer School, by correspondence
- 1986 Air Command and Staff College, by correspondence
- 1987 Master of Science degree in computer resource management, Webster University
- 1988 Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
- 1990 Air War College, by correspondence
- 1993 National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
- 1995 Fellow, Seminar XXI, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
- 1998 Fellow, National Security Studies Program, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York and Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland
- 1999 Fellow, Ukrainian Security Studies, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts
- 2002 The General Manager Program, Harvard Business School, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts
- 2009 Fellow, Pinnacle Course, National Defense University, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
- 2009 Leadership at the Peak, Center for Creative Leadership, Colorado Springs, Colorado
- August 1976 – July 1977, student, undergraduate pilot training, Williams Air Force Base, Arizona
- July 1977– January 1981, T-37 instructor pilot and class commander, Williams Air Force Base, Arizona
- January 1981 – May 1981, student, fighter lead-in training, Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico
- May 1981 – August 1981, student, A-10 training, Davis–Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona
- August 1981 – May 1984, instructor pilot, flight commander and wing standardization and evaluation flight examiner, 78th Tactical Fighter Squadron and 81st Tactical Fighter Wing, Royal Air Force Station Woodbridge, England
- May 1984 – June 1987, Air Officer Commanding, Cadet Squadron 5, later, executive officer to the Commandant of Cadets, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado
- June 1987 – June 1988, student, Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
- June 1988 – October 1988, student, F-16 conversion training, Luke AFB, Arizona
- October 1988 – July 1992, operations officer, 34th Tactical Fighter Squadron, later, Commander, 4th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Hill AFB, Utah
- July 1992 – June 1993, student, National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
- June 1993 – June 1995, Chief, Defense and Space Operations Division, Operations Directorate (J3), Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
- June 1995 – April 1997, Commander, 347th Operations Group, Moody AFB, Ga.
- April 1997 – June 1998, Commander, 8th Fighter Wing, Kunsan Air Base, South Korea
- June 1998 – June 1999, Commander, College of Aerospace Doctrine, Research and Education, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
- June 1999 – September 2001, Commandant of Cadets and Commander, 34th Training Wing, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado
- September 2001 – April 2003, Director of Plans and Programs, Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Ramstein AB, Germany
- April 2003 – June 2005, Director of Global Power Programs, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
- June 2005 – June 2007, Deputy Commander, Joint Functional Component Command for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, U.S. Strategic Command, Bolling AFB, Washington, D.C.
- July 2007 – August 2008, Vice Commander, Air Education and Training Command, Randolph AFB, Texas
- August 2008 – December 2010, Associate Director of the Central Intelligence Agency for Military Support/Associate Director for Military Affairs, Central Intelligence Agency, Washington, D.C.
- December 2010 – July 2012, Commander, U.S. Air Forces in Europe; Commander, Air Component Command, Ramstein; and Director, Joint Air Power Competency Center, Ramstein AB, Germany
- August 2012 – June 2016, Chief of Staff, U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington D.C.
Summary of joint assignments
- June 1993 – June 1995, Chief, Defense and Space Operations Division, Operations Directorate (J3), Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., as a lieutenant colonel and a colonel
- June 2005 – June 2007, Deputy Commander, Joint Functional Component Command for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, U.S. Strategic Command, Bolling AFB, Washington, D.C., as a major general
- August 2008 – December 2010, Associate Director for Military Affairs, Central Intelligence Agency, Washington, D.C., as a major general and a lieutenant general
- December 2010 – July 2012, Commander, U.S. Air Forces in Europe; Commander, Air Component Command, Ramstein; and Director, Joint Air Power Competency Center, Ramstein AB, Germany, as a general
Awards and decorations
- In 2016, General Welsh has been named an honorary Tuskegee Airman.
- Also in 2016, on April 22, Gen. Welsh was inducted into the Order of the Sword.
Effective dates of promotion
United States Air Force Academy Cadet – Class of 1976
|Second Lieutenant||June 2, 1976|
|First Lieutenant||June 2, 1978|
|Captain||June 2, 1980|
|Major||May 1, 1985|
|Lieutenant Colonel||June 1, 1989|
|Colonel||February 1, 1994|
|Brigadier General||August 1, 2000|
|Major General||August 1, 2003|
|Lieutenant General||December 9, 2008|
|General||December 13, 2010|
- http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CHRG-112shrg80073/pdf/CHRG-112shrg80073.pdf PDF
- "General Officer Announcements". Defense.gov. Retrieved May 8, 2014.
- "General MAark A. Welsh III". Retrieved May 8, 2014.
- "Press Briefing by Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning and Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark A. Welsh III on the State of the Air Force". enewspf.com. EEWSPF. December 13, 2013. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
- Garamone, Jim (December 13, 2013). "CSAF outlines joint strike fighter’s value". af.mil. American Forces Press Service. Retrieved December 14, 2013.
- Davenport, Christian (April 10, 2014). "Air Force plan to get rid of A-10s runs into opposition". The Washington Post. Retrieved March 10, 2015.
This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Government document "http://www.af.mil/information/bios/bio.asp?bioID=7550".
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mark A. Welsh III.|
- on YouTube
- Culbert, A1C Alexa (April 27, 2016). "Enlisted corps bestows highest honor upon Welsh". Air Force News Service. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
|Commander of United States Air Forces in Europe
|Chief of Staff of the Air Force
David L. Goldfein