Lt. Gen. Darren W. McDew is Commander, 18th Air Force, Scott Air Force Base, Ill. As Air Mobility Command's sole warfighting numbered air force, 18th Air Force is responsible for the command's worldwide operational mission of providing rapid, global mobility and sustainment for America's armed forces through airlift, aerial refueling, aeromedical evacuation, and contingency response. With more than 37,000 active-duty Airmen, Reservists and civilians and approximately 1,100 aircraft, the 18th Air Force manages the global air mobility enterprise through the 618th Air and Space Operations Center (Tanker Airlift Control Center), 11 wings and two stand-alone groups. General McDew also commands Task Force 294, which oversees Air Force tanker operations in support of U.S. Strategic Command.
General McDew was commissioned in 1982 following his graduation from Virginia Military Institute. He began his flying career at Loring Air Force Base, Maine. His staff assignments include serving as a member of the Air Force Chief of Staff Operations Group, Air Force aide to the President, and Chief of the U.S. Air Force Senate Liaison Division, Washington, D.C. and the Director of Public Affairs, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, Washington, D.C. The general has served as the Vice Commander of 18th Air Force, Scott AFB, Ill., and has commanded at the squadron, group and wing levels as well as an Air Force Direct Reporting Unit. He has deployed in support of ongoing operations in Central and Southwest Asia as an air expeditionary group commander and later as the Director of Mobility Forces. Prior to his current assignment, the general was the Commander, Air Force District of Washington, Joint Base Andrews, Maryland.
The general is a command pilot with more than 3,000 flying hours in a variety of aircraft.
1982 Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering, Virginia Military Institute, Lexington
1985 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1994 Master of Science degree in aviation management, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
1995 Air Command and Staff College, by correspondence
2000 Secretary of Defense Corporate Fellowship, Sun Microsystems Inc., Palo Alto, Calif.
2003 National Security Studies, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University, N.Y.
2005 Leadership Development Program, Center for Creative Leadership, Greensboro, N.C.
2008 Senior Joint Information Operations Applications Course, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2008 Air Force Enterprise Leadership Seminar, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, N.C.
2011 Department of Defense National Security Studies Program, Defense Policy Seminar, Elliott School of International Affairs, Washington, D.C.
2012 Joint Task Force Commander Training Course, Colorado Springs, Colo.
2013 Pinnacle Course, Bolling AFB, Washington, D.C.
2013 Joint Force Air Component Commander Course, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1. October 1982 - October 1983, Student, undergraduate pilot training, Williams AFB, Ariz.
2. March 1984 - June 1989, Standardization and Evaluation Copilot, Aircraft Commander, Instructor Pilot and Flight commander, 42nd Air Refueling Squadron, Loring AFB, Maine
3. July 1989 - June 1992, Combat Crew Training School examiner and Instructor Pilot, Assistant Deputy Wing Inspector and Wing Executive Officer, 93rd Bomb Wing, Castle AFB, Calif.
4. July 1992 - April 1994, Rated Force Planner, Directorate of Personnel Plans; member, Air Force Chief of Staff Operations Group, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
5. April 1994 - June 1996, Air Force aide to the President, White House, Washington, D.C.
6. October 1996 - June 1997, Assistant Operations Officer, 14th Airlift Squadron, Charleston AFB, S.C.
7. June 1997 - June 1999, Commander, 14th Airlift Squadron, Charleston AFB, S.C.
8. August 1999 - July 2000, Secretary of Defense Corporate Fellow, Sun Microsystems Inc., Palo Alto, Calif.
9. July 2000 - January 2002, Commander, 62nd Operations Group, McChord AFB, Wash. (September 2001 - December 2001, Commander, 60th Air Expeditionary Group, Southwest Asia)
10. January 2002 - July 2003, Commander, 375th Airlift Wing, and Installation Commander, Scott AFB, Ill.
11. July 2003 - January 2005, Chief, U.S. Air Force Senate Liaison Division, Secretary of the Air Force, Washington, D.C.
12. January 2005 - July 2006, Commander, 43rd Airlift Wing, and Installation Commander, Pope AFB, N.C. (January 2006 - May 2006, Director of Mobility Forces, Southwest Asia)
13. July 2006 - November 2007, Vice Commander, 18th Air Force, Scott AFB, Ill.
14. November 2007 - February 2009, Director of Public Affairs, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
15. February 2009 - December 2010, Vice Director for Strategic Plans and Policy, Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
16. December 2010 - August 2012, Commander, Air Force District of Washington, Andrews AFB, Md.
17. August 2012 - present, Commander, 18th Air Force, Scott AFB, Ill.
SUMMARY OF JOINT ASSIGNMENTS
1. April 1994 - June 1996, Air Force aide to the President, White House, Washington, D.C., as a major
2. February 2009 - December 2010, Vice Director for Strategic Plans and Policy, Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., as a major general
Rating: Command pilot
Flight hours: More than 3,000
Aircraft flown: T-37B, T-38A, KC-135A/R, C-17A, C-141B, C-21A, C-9A, C-130E/H, and UH-1N
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters
Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters
Army Commendation Medal
Air Force Achievement Medal
Joint Meritorious Unit Award with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with nine oak leaf clusters
Air Force Organizational Excellence Award with three oak leaf clusters
Combat Readiness Medal with three oak leaf clusters
National Defense Service Medal with bronze star
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Kosovo Campaign Medal with bronze star
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Armed Forces Service Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 15, 1982
First Lieutenant May 15, 1984
Captain July 13, 1986
Major March 1, 1994
Lieutenant Colonel Jan. 1, 1997
Colonel April, 2000
Brigadier General Sept. 2, 2006
Major General Dec. 9, 2008
Lieutenant General Aug. 6, 2012
(Current as of February 2014)