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COLONEL JUSTIN B. SPEARS

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Colonel Justin B. Spears is the Commander, 14th Operations Group, Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. The group conducts Pilot Training and Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals for more than 400 U.S. Air Force and international officers each year, using a fleet of 233 T-6A, T-38C and T-1A aircraft and 27 flight simulators at Columbus AFB. In addition, the group directs the tactical training for Afghan pilots and maintenance members utilizing the A-29 Super Tucano at Moody AFB, Georgia. The 14th Operations Group also oversees an air traffic control complex with over 300,000 aircraft movements annually. His command includes eight squadrons with over 1,300 officers, civilians, enlisted and contract personnel.

 

Colonel Spears was commissioned in the Air Force in 1998 after graduating from the U.S. Air Force Academy. His fighter flying assignments include duties as a flight commander, instructor pilot, flight examiner, Director of Operations and Squadron Commander. With more than 100 hours of combat time, Colonel Spears has flown in Operations SOUTHERN WATCH, NOBLE EAGLE, and IRAQI FREEDOM. He completed staff assignments on the PACAF Commander’s Action Group, and as the Executive Officer to the Commander, 11th Air Force and Alaskan Command, and USINDOPACOM J3X. He is a command pilot with more than 2,300 hours in the F-16 and F-22.

 

EDUCATION:

1998 B.S. in English, United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, CO

1998 Air and Space Basic Course, Maxwell AFB, AL

2002 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, AL

2009 M.A. in Military Operational Arts and Science, Air University, Maxwell AFB, AL

2010 M.A. in Public Policy, Georgetown University, Washington D.C.

2017 M.A. in National Security and Strategic Studies, U.S. Naval War College, Newport, RI

 

ASSIGNMENTS:

1. Mar 1999 – Mar 2000, student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Laughlin AFB, TX

2. Apr 2000 – Jun 2000, student, Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals, Columbus AFB, MS

3. Jul 2000 – Mar 2001, student, F-16 Fighter Training, Luke AFB, AZ

4. Apr 2001- Apr 2002, Deputy Chief of Tactics, 80th Fighter Squadron, Kunsan AB, S. Korea

5. May 2002 – Apr 2005, Chief of Stan/Eval, 23rd Fighter Squadron, Spangdahlem AB, Germany

8. Jun 2005 – Jul 2007, Flight Commander, 27th Fighter Squadron, Langley AFB, VA

11. Jul 2007 – July 2010, Chief of Stan/Eval, 3rd Ops Group, Elmendorf AFB, AK

13. July 2010 – July 2011, graduate student, Georgetown University, Washington D.C.

14. July 2011 – June 2012, Speechwriter to COMPACAF, Deputy CAG Director, JBPH-H, HI

15. July 2012 – Oct 2013, Executive Officer to the Commander, 11 AF and Alaska Command, JBER, AK

16. Oct 2013 – June 2014, Director of Operations, 525th Fighter Squadron, JBER, AK

17. June 2014 – June 2016, Commander, 19th Fighter Squadron, JBPH-H, HI

18. June 2016 – June 2017, student, U.S. Naval War College, Newport, RI

19. June 2017 – Sep 2018, Deputy Chief of Combat Operations, 613th Air Operations Center, JBPH-H, HI

20. Sept 2018 – July 2020, Operations Officer, Sensitive Activities Division J3X, USINDOPACOM, HI

21. July 2020 – Present, Commander, 14th Operations Group, Columbus AFB, MS

 

MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS:

Defense Meritorious Service Medal

Meritorious Service Medal

Air Medal

Air Force Combat Action Medal

Air Force Commendation Medal

Air Force Achievement Medal

Combat Readiness Medal

National Defense Service Medal

Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal

Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

Korean Defense Service Medal

 

EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION:

Second Lieutenant May 1998

First Lieutenant May 2000

Captain May 2002

Major Nov 2007

Lieutenant Colonel Mar 2013

Colonel June 2019

 

FLIGHT INFORMATION:

Rating: Command Pilot

Flight Hours: 2300

Aircraft Flown: T-37, T-38, F-16, F-22, T-6

 

(Current as of July 2020)