HomeAbout UsBiographiesDisplay

GENERAL PAUL V. HESTER

PRINT | E-MAIL

Gen. Paul V. Hester is Commander, Pacific Air Forces, and Air Component Commander for the Commander, U.S. Pacific Command, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. He has responsibility for Air Force activities spread over half the globe in a command that supports 55,500 Air Force people serving principally in Hawaii, Alaska, Guam, Japan and South Korea.

General Hester was commissioned through the ROTC program at the University of Mississippi. He entered the Air Force in January 1971 and earned his wings in December 1971 at Columbus AFB, Miss. A command pilot and combat veteran, the general has more than 200 combat hours in Southeast Asia and has accumulated more than 3,200 flight hours during his career. Additionally, he has served as an instructor in the A-7D, F-4 and F-15 in operational and training units. General Hester has commanded the 94th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Capt. Eddie Rickenbacker's famed "Hat in the Ring Gang," 18th Operations Group, 35th Fighter Wing, 53rd Wing and U.S. Forces Japan and 5th Air Force at Yokota Air Base. Prior to assuming his current position, the general was Commander, Air Force Special Operations Command, Hurlburt Field, Fla.

General Hester's staff tours include duty in the Directorate of Plans, as a member of the Commander's Action Group at Headquarters Tactical Air Command, Chief of the Air Force's Legislative Liaison Office at the U.S. House of Representatives, Division Chief in J-5 of the Joint Staff, Joint Chiefs of Staff representative to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and Director of Air Force Legislative Liaison for the Secretary and the Chief of Staff of the Air Force. Most recently he was the Air Component Commander and force provider to Joint Task Force-536 during Operation Unified Assistance in support of the South Asia tsunami relief effort.

EDUCATION
1969 Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accountancy, University of Mississippi
1970 Master of Business Administration degree in accountancy, University of Mississippi
1974 Squadron Officer School
1979 Air Command and Staff College
1980 Master's degree in military arts and science, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
1990 National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
1992 Program for Senior Officials in National Security, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.
1993 Senior Defense Fellow, Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.
1999 Executive Program for General Officers of the Russian Federation and the United States, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.

ASSIGNMENTS
1. January 1971 - December 1971, student, pilot training, Columbus AFB, Miss.
2. January 1972 - December 1972, A-7D pilot, 333rd Tactical Fighter Training Squadron, Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz.
3. January 1973 - July 1973, A-7D aircraft commander, 354th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Korat Royal Thai AFB, Thailand
4. August 1973 - August 1974, A-7D aircraft commander, 355th Tactical Fighter Wing, Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz.
5. September 1974 - December 1976, aide-de-camp and F-4 instructor, later, F-15 instructor, 311th, 555th and 461st tactical fighter training squadrons, Luke AFB, Ariz.
6. January 1977 - June 1979, F-15 instructor and flight examiner, 525th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Bitburg AB, West Germany
7. July 1979 - July 1980, student, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
8. August 1980 - August 1983, action officer, Forces Division, Directorate of Plans, later, member, Commander's Action Group, Headquarters Tactical Air Command, Langley AFB, Va.
9. September 1983 - November 1986, F-15 instructor and assistant operations officer, 27th Tactical Fighter Squadron, later, operations officer and Commander, 94th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Langley AFB, Va.
10. December 1986 - July 1989, Chief, Legislative Liaison Office, U.S. House of Representatives, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force for Legislative Liaison, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
11. August 1989 - June 1990, student, National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
12. July 1990 - July 1992, Vice Commander, 18th Tactical Fighter Wing, later, Commander, 18th Operations Group, Kadena AB, Japan
13. August 1992 - June 1993, Senior Defense Fellow, Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.
14. July 1993 - July 1994, Chief, Weapons Technology Control Division, J-5, Joint Chiefs of Staff, Washington, D.C.
15. August 1994 - November 1995, Joint Chiefs of Staff representative to the Committee on Security and Cooperation in Europe, Vienna, Austria
16. November 1995 - February 1997, Commander, 35th Fighter Wing, Misawa AB, Japan
17. February 1997 - December 1997, Commander, 53rd Wing, Eglin AFB, Fla.
18. December 1997 - August 1999, Director, Legislative Liaison, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
19. September 1999 - November 2001, Commander, U.S. Forces Japan, and Commander, 5th Air Force, Yokota AB, Japan
20. January 2002 - July 2004, Commander, AFSOC, Hurlburt Field, Fla.
21. July 2004 - present, Commander, Pacific Air Forces, and Air Component Commander for the Commander, U.S. Pacific Command, Hickam AFB, Hawaii

FLIGHT INFORMATION
Rating: Command pilot
Flight hours: More than 3,200
Aircraft flown: T-37, T-38, T-33, A-7D, F-4, F-15, F-16 and MC-130H

MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Distinguished Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Defense Superior Service Medal
Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters
Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with four oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal
Combat Readiness Medal
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Vietnam Service Medal with bronze star
Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm
Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS
2000 Japanese Grand Cordon of the Order of the Sacred Treasure
2004 Order of the Sword, Air Force Special Operations Command

EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 31, 1970
First Lieutenant June 3, 1972
Captain Dec. 3, 1974
Major Sept. 1, 1979
Lieutenant Colonel March 1, 1984
Colonel June 1, 1988
Brigadier General July 15, 1994
Major General March 20, 1998
Lieutenant General Nov. 15, 1999
General Aug. 1, 2004

(Current as of January 2007)

Engage

Facebook Twitter
#TBT: The 146th Air Support Operations Squadron spent a week w/their British and Estonian counterparts working a va… https://t.co/d8ClxzmFq2
#TBT: The 146th Air Support Operations Squadron spent a week w/their British and Estonian counterparts working a va… https://t.co/AoV8IAwvih
Enlisted leaders from around the world converge in #Jordan for the 4th annual Sergeants Major Symposium.… https://t.co/XMwVjiAAQp
RT @AirmanMagazine: Help us select the "Airman Top Shot" of the week by liking, commenting and sharing your favorite @usairforce photo. The…
Listen in as the first #Airman to refuel a KC-46A Pegasus from a KC-135 Stratotanker recounts his experience! @22ARW https://t.co/qAWLiQsHdo
RT @DOD_Outreach: .@NASCAR driver @BubbaWallace is used to acceleration, but got to experience 9 G’s during a @USAirForce F-15 flight at @S
RT @USAFCENT: @iqAirForce #F16 Fighting Falcon #aircraft flies a mission above the Iraqi-Syrian border alongside Co… https://t.co/1gZfXiMi2O
#VandenbergAFB aids during exercise Patriot Hook 2019, trains for real-world scenarios in the event of a regional e… https://t.co/IqnN00cJv1
.@SecAFOfficial underscores space strategy and partnerships with allies. https://t.co/X391mBc6E6 https://t.co/CFk69M8WW4
RT @SecAFOfficial: Thanks for inviting me to be part of @Policy_Exchange’s launch of the space policy unit #PXSpace! Great dialogue on #spa
#USAF's new rules on the #OCP uniform aims to better fit our #Airmen's needs as they perform the mission, while hol… https://t.co/cd6hd13Y21
As we continue the #MonthoftheMilitaryChild, check out how @341MissileWing youth build resiliency through gymnastic… https://t.co/kphokVfZTq
Things are heating up at #MountainHomeAFB! Watch as #Airmen @366FW fire department conduct #LiveFireTraining to ens… https://t.co/WRqHdMKdQs
RT @AusAirForce: Friends in high places... literally! Glad to continue the strong cooperation & mateship with @usairforce 🇦🇺🇺🇸 #AusAirForce
#Congrats to the #USAF 2019 Secretary of Defense Environmental Award winners! https://t.co/5j07VznEsc
RT @DeptofDefense: For 41 years, the Global Positioning System has helped us find our way in the world. It’s a system that our modern way o…
#DYK: In 2015 the worldwide C-17 fleet reached 3 million flying hours. The equivalent of flying around the #Earth 5… https://t.co/U01R6Y1gPe
#USAF and @Nationals partner up to teach 40 new commanders and their spouses leadership techniques.… https://t.co/doApMhiIWX
#Airmen & #Soldiers in #Kuwait teamed up to train military working dog handlers on decontamination of their K9s in… https://t.co/QtlvQGUgyF
.@179AW #Airmen know the hardest part isn't the jump, it's the preparation for the heavy drop beforehand. https://t.co/WMV2fBXN2x