Gen. Gary L. North is Commander, Pacific Air Forces; Air Component Commander for U.S. Pacific Command; and Executive Director, Pacific Air Combat Operations Staff, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. PACAF is responsible for Air Force activities spread over half the globe in a command that supports 45,000 Airmen serving principally in Japan, Korea, Hawaii, Alaska and Guam.
General North was commissioned in 1976 as a distinguished graduate from East Carolina University's ROTC program. He has held numerous operational, command and staff positions, and has completed five long and four short overseas tours. The general has served two tours on the Joint Staff, serving as executive officer to the Director of the Joint Staff, and as Director of Politico-Military Affairs for Asia-Pacific, where he was responsible for regional planning and policy for the Asia-Pacific, South Asia and Central Asia regions. He has served on the Air Force Staff as the Chief, Joint Requirements Division and Deputy Director of Joint Matters, and as the J-3/Director for Operations, U.S. Pacific Command, Camp H.M. Smith, Hawaii. Prior to his current assignment, General North was the Commander, 9th Air Force and U.S. Air Forces Central, Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., comprising six wings in the 9th AF and eight air expeditionary wings in AFCENT, and served as the USCENTCOM Combined Forces Air Component Commander and service functional Air Component Commander for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
General North has also commanded the 33rd Fighter Squadron at Shaw AFB, S.C.; 35th Operations Group at Misawa Air Base, Japan; 8th Fighter Wing at Kunsan AB, South Korea; and the 18th Wing at Kadena AB, Japan. He is a command pilot with more than 4,700 flying hours, primarily in the F-4, F-15 and F-16. He flew 83 combat missions in Operations Desert Storm, Southern Watch, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
1976 Bachelor's degree in political science, East Carolina University, N.C.
1982 Squadron Officer School, by correspondence
1984 Master's degree in public administration, Golden Gate University
1986 Master's degree in human resource management, Golden Gate University
1990 Armed Forces Staff College, Norfolk, Va.
1994 Master's degree in national resource strategy, Industrial College of the Armed Forces, National Defense University, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
1997 Seminar XXI, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
1. September 1976 - May 1977, student, undergraduate navigator training, Mather AFB, Calif.
2. May 1977 - October 1978, student, Electronic Warfare Officer School, Mather AFB, Calif.
3. January 1978 - June 1978, student, F-4E upgrade training, Homestead AFB, Fla.
4. July 1978 - July 1979, weapons systems officer, 35th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Kunsan AB, South Korea
5. August 1979 - September 1980, F-4G Wild Weasel electronic warfare officer, 561st and 563rd tactical fighter squadrons, George AFB, Calif.
6. September 1980 - September 1981, student, undergraduate pilot training, Reese AFB, Texas
7. September 1981 - September 1982, fighter lead-in training, Holloman AFB, N.M., and F-16 transition, Hill AFB, Utah
8. September 1982 - April 1985, squadron scheduler and squadron weapons officer, 19th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Shaw AFB, S.C.
9. April 1985 - August 1985, pilot, U.S. Air Force Fighter Weapons School, Nellis AFB, Nev.
10. August 1985 - June 1986, wing weapons officer, 363rd Tactical Fighter Wing, Shaw AFB, S.C.
11. June 1986 - June 1987, F-16 weapons officer and flight commander, 526th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Ramstein AB, West Germany
12. June 1987 - June 1989, aide-de-camp and F-16 instructor pilot to the Commander-in-Chief of U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Ramstein AB, West Germany
13. July 1989 - January 1990, Armed Forces Staff College, Norfolk, Va.
14. March 1990 - July 1993, assistant operations officer, 19th Tactical Fighter Squadron; wing Chief of Standardization and Evaluation, and Chief of Wing Weapons and Safety, Operation Desert Storm, 363rd Fighter Wing; and Commander, 33rd Fighter Squadron, Shaw AFB, S.C.
15. August 1993 - June 1994, Industrial College of the Armed Forces, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
16. July 1994 - August 1996, Commander, 432nd/35th Operations Group, Misawa AB, Japan
17. August 1996 - August 1997, Chief, Joint Requirements Division and Deputy Director of Joint Matters, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
18. August 1997 - May 1999, executive assistant to the Director, the Joint Staff, Washington, D.C.
19. May 1999 - May 2000, Commander, 8th Fighter Wing, Kunsan AB, South Korea
20. August 2000 - April 2002, Commander, 18th Wing, Kadena AB, Japan
21. April 2002 - June 2004, Deputy Director of Politico-Military Affairs for Asia-Pacific (J5), Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
22. July 2004 - January 2006, Director for Operations (J3), U.S. Pacific Command, Camp H.M. Smith, Hawaii
23. February 2006 - August 2009, Commander, 9th Air Force and U.S. Air Forces Central, Shaw AFB, S.C.
24. August 2009 - present, Commander, Pacific Air Forces; Air Component Commander for U.S. Pacific Command; and Executive Director, Pacific Air Combat Operations Staff, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam AFB, Hawaii
SUMMARY OF JOINT ASSIGNMENTS
1. August 1990 - August 1992, Desert Shield/Desert Storm Planner, Joint Credit, as a lieutenant colonel
2. September 1997 - May 1999, Executive Officer to the Director, Joint Staff, as a colonel
3. April 2002 - June 2004, Deputy Director, Politico-Military Affairs for Asia-Pacific (J5), Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., as a brigadier general
4. July 2004 - January 2006, Director of Operations (J3) US Pacific Command , as a major general
Rating: Command pilot
Flight hours: 4,700
Aircraft flown: F-4, F-15 and F-16
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster
Distinguished Flying Cross with "V" device and oak leaf cluster
Bronze Star Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Medal with silver oak leaf cluster
Aerial Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Combat Readiness Medal with silver oak leaf cluster
1993 Lance P. Sijan U.S. Air Force Leadership Award
2011 Order of the Sword
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant Sept. 4, 1976
First Lieutenant Sept. 4, 1978
Captain Sept. 4, 1980
Major March 1, 1987
Lieutenant Colonel April 1, 1990
Colonel Feb. 1, 1995
Brigadier General Aug. 1, 2001
Major General June 1, 2005
Lieutenant General Feb. 16, 2006
General Aug. 19, 2009
(Current as of September 2012)