HomeAbout UsBiographiesDisplay

GENERAL LARRY D. WELCH

PRINT | E-MAIL

General Larry D. Welch is the 12th chief of staff, U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C. As chief, he serves as the senior uniformed Air Force Officer responsible for the organization, training and equipage of a combined active duty, Guard, Reserve and civilian force serving at locations in the United States and overseas. As a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, he and the other service chiefs function as the principal military advisers to the secretary of defense, National Security Council and the president.

General Welch was born in 1934 in Guymon, Okla., and graduated from Liberal (Kan.) High School in 1952. He received a bachelor of arts degree in business administration from the University of Maryland and a master of science degree in international relations from The George Washington University, Washington, D.C. The general completed Armed Forces Staff College at Norfolk, Va., in 1967, and National War College at Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C., in 1972.

He enlisted in the Kansas National Guard in October 1951, serving with the 161st Armored Field Artillery until he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. In November 1953, he entered the aviation cadet program and received his pilot wings and commission as a second lieutenant. He served initially as a flight instructor until his assignment in July 1958, to Headquarters Air Training Command, Randolph Air Force Base, Texas.

General Welch then served in tactical fighter units in Europe, the continental United States and Alaska before transferring to the Republic of Vietnam where he flew combat missions in F-4C's over North and South Vietnam, and Laos.

After completing the Armed Forces Staff College in July 1967, he was assigned to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., under the assistant chief of staff for studies and analysis. Upon graduation from the National War College in July 1972, he was assigned to Tactical Air Command, where he served in wing deputy commander for operations, vice commander and wing commander positions.

In August 1977, he transferred to Headquarters Tactical Air Command where he served as inspector general, deputy chief of staff for plans and deputy chief of staff for operations. In June 1981, he became commander of the 9th Air Force and Air Force component commander for the Rapid Deployment Joint Task Force. In November 1982, he was assigned as deputy chief of staff for programs and resources at Air Force headquarters and became vice chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force in July 1984. From August 1985 to June 1986, he served as commander in chief, Strategic Air Command, and director, Joint Strategic Target Planning Staff, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. He became Air Force chief of staff in July 1986.

The general is a command pilot with more than 6,500 flying hours. His military decorations and awards include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, Distinguished Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Distinguished Flying Cross, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal with six oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Joint Meritorious Unit Award and Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with "V" device and two oak leaf clusters.

He was promoted to general Aug. 1, 1984, with same date of rank.


(Current as of May 1989)

Engage

Facebook Twitter
.@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
.@HQUSAFEPA #Airmen combined their capabilities to provide disaster relief to those affected by #CycloneIdai, deliv… https://t.co/kzkdQA8TOS
The results are in as #USAF announces findings from a year-long review on electronic warfare. Read on for more on t… https://t.co/wAEDCRjj5L
Congratulations to the Lance P. Sijan Leadership Award recipients! Named in honor of the first @AF_Academy graduate… https://t.co/fiOTVLfrpD
RT @SecAFOfficial: Our military must have the ability to see what is going on around the world, quickly and without interruption...and this…
#USAF #Airmen and firefighters from five #CentralAmerican countries develop bonds with team-building training durin… https://t.co/An5wJIt0B6
#Brrrt! Check out this video of our hawgs training in the Philippines. #Warthog #Pilsung https://t.co/cL8E1oE5Ob
RT @SecAFOfficial: Today, the family & friends of Lt. Col. Richard "Dick" Cole celebrated his legendary life. Dick and the rest of the Dool…
On the 77th anniversary of the #DoolitlleRaid, #USAF leaders, #Airmen, and the family and friends of Lt. Col. Richa… https://t.co/RE4wWGQe4t