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Library > Biographies > COLONEL JAMES R. SEARS JR.

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Col. Jim Sears is the commander, 14th Flying Training Wing, Columbus Air Force Base, Miss. The 14th FTW conducts Specialized Undergraduate Pilot training for U.S. Air Force and allied officers. The wing possesses 234 aircraft and flies 58,000 sorties and over 82,000 hours to train over 420 pilots and combat system operators annually. He is responsible for base support and medical care for the wing's 3,000 military, civilian and contract Airmen, an operations and maintenance budget of $106 million and capital assets exceeding $1.3 billion. The wing additionally supports seven associated units and provides contingency mission support for the Air Education and Training Command.

Colonel Sears was commissioned in 1991 as a graduate from the United States Air Force Academy. His flight experience spans from C-130 low level special operations to every conventional mission in the F-16. Colonel Sears has held multiple positions at the squadron, group, and wing levels and staff assignments at Pacific Air Forces and U.S. European Command. He has commanded a fighter squadron and operations group. Prior to his current assignment he was the 20th Operations Group Commander at Shaw AFB, S.C.

He is a command pilot with over 3,200 flying hours, including combat over Afghanistan and Iraq.

1991 Bachelor of Science in Political Science, United States Air Force Academy 1997 Master of Arts in Human Resource Development, Webster University
1998 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2003 Air Command and Staff College, by correspondence
2005 Air War College, by correspondence
2006 Master of Science in Joint Campaign Planning and Strategy, Joint Advanced Warfighting School, National Defense University
2011 Leadership Development Program, Center for Creative Leadership
2012 Executive Leadership Development Program, Darden School of Business, University of Virginia

1. August 1991 - September 1992, Student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Williams AFB, Ariz.
2. October 1992 - January 1993, Student, C-130 Replacement Training Unit, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
3. January 1993 - December 1995, C-130 Aircraft Commander, Special Operations Low-Level II Pilot, and mission scheduler, 40th and 41st Airlift Squadrons, Pope AFB, N.C.
4. December 1995 - March 1998, assistant chief of standardization and evaluation, T-3A Instructor Pilot and Flight Examiner, 557th Flying Training Squadron, United States Air Force Academy, Colo.
5. April 1998 - Jun 1999, Student, F-16 Replacement Training Unit, Luke AFB, Ariz.
6. July 1999 - April 2002, Wing Training and Life Support Officer, Flight Commander, and F-16 Mission Commander, 18th Fighter Squadron, Eielson AFB, Alaska
7. May 2002 - April 2003, Assistant Director of Operations, F-16 Instructor Pilot and Flight Examiner, 35th Fighter Squadron, Kunsan AB, Republic of Korea
8. April 2003 - June 2005, Deputy Director, Pacific Air Forces Commander's Action Group, Hickam AFB, Hawaii
9. July 2005 - June 2006, Senior Developmental Education Student, Joint Advanced Warfighting School, Naval Air Station Norfolk, Va.
10. July 2006 - July 2007, Chief of Wing Safety, 56th Fighter Wing, Luke AFB, Ariz.
11. July 2007 - October 2008, Commander, 61st Fighter Squadron, Luke AFB, Ariz.
12. October 2008 - August 2010, Special Assistant to the SACEUR and Commander, USEUCOM, Supreme Headquarters, Allied Powers Europe, Belgium
13. August 2010 - June 2012, Commander, 20th Operations Group, Shaw AFB, S.C.
14. June 2012 - Present, Commander, 14th Flying Training Wing, Columbus AFB, Miss

FLIGHT INFORMATION Rating: Command Pilot Flight hours: More than 3,100 Aircraft flown: C-130E, T-3A, F-16 blocks 25-50, and T-38C

Legion of Merit
Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor Device
Defense Meritorious Service Medal Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters Aerial Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Commendation Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with service star
Southwest Asia Service Medal with service star
Korean Defense Service Medal
Humanitarian Service Medal with service star
Afghanistan Campaign Medal

Second Lieutenant May 29, 1991
First Lieutenant May 29, 1993
Captain May 29, 1995
Major April 1, 2002
Lieutenant Colonel March 1, 2006
Colonel October 1, 2009

(Current as of July 2013)

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