HomeAbout UsBiographiesDisplay

MAJOR GENERAL ROBERT M. WHITE

PRINT | E-MAIL

Major General Robert M. White is chief of staff, Fourth Allied Tactical Air Force, Ramstein Air Base, Germany.

General White was born in New York City in 1924. He attended New York public schools, earned a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from New York University in 1951 and a master of science degree in business administration from The George Washington University in 1966. He graduated from the Air Command and Staff College in 1959 and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in 1966.

He entered active military service in November 1942 as an aviation cadet and received his pilot wings and commission as a second lieutenant in February 1944.

During World War II he served with the 355th Fighter Group in the European Theater of operations, where he flew P-51 aircraft from July 1944 until February 1945 when he was shot down over Germany on his 52nd combat mission. He was captured and remained a prisoner of war until his release in April 1945. He then returned to the United States, left active duty in December 1945, and became a member of the Air Force Reserve at Mitchel Air Force Base, N.Y. During this period he attended New York University.

General White was recalled to active duty in May 1951, during the Korean War, where he served as pilot and engineering officer with the 514th Troop Carrier Wing at Mitchel Air Force Base, N.Y. In February 1952 he was assigned as a fighter pilot and flight commander with the 40th Fighter Squadron, based near Tokyo, Japan. In August 1953 he returned from overseas to serve as a systems engineer at Rome Air Development Center, Griffiss Air Force Base, N.Y.

General White moved to Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., in June 1954, where he attended the USAF Experimental Test Pilot School. He then served as a test pilot and deputy chief of the Flight Test Operations Division, and later as assistant chief of the Manned Spacecraft Operations Branch.

During that period he made research flights in the X-15 aircraft. On Nov. 9, 1961, he became the first man to fly a winged craft six times faster than the speed of sound when he flew his X-15 at 4,093 miles per hour. On July 17, 1962, General White flew the rocket-powered X-15 research aircraft 59.6 miles above the earth. For this feat, he won the Air Force rating of winged astronaut--the first one awarded to a pilot.

In October 1963 he returned to Germany, where he served as operations officer for the 36th Tactical Fighter Wing at Bitburg, and later as commander of the 53d Tactical Fighter Squadron. He returned to the United States in August 1965 to attend the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, Washington, D.C., and graduated a year later. General White then was transferred to Air Force Systems Command at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, as chief of the Tactical Systems Office, F-111 Systems Program Office.

In May 1967 he received a Southeast Asia assignment as deputy commander for operations, 355th Tactical Fighter Wing, at Takhli Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand. He completed 70 combat missions in F-105 aircraft over North Vietnam. In October 1967 he became chief, attack division, Directorate of Combat Operations at Seventh Air Force Headquarters, Tan Son Nhut Airfield, Republic of Vietnam.

He returned to the United States and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in June 1968, where he served as director of the F-15 Systems Program in the Aeronautical Systems Division, Air Force Systems Command. In August 1970 General White assumed duties as commander of the Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., where he was responsible for research and developmental flight testing of manned and unmanned aerospace vehicles, aircraft systems, deceleration devices and for the Air Force Test Pilot School. During his tenure as commander, testing was begun on such important programs as the F-15 Air Superiority Fighter, the A-X ground attack aircraft, and the Airborne Warning and Control System. In October 1971 he completed the Naval Test Parachutist course and was awarded parachutist's wings.

In November 1972 General White assumed duties as commandant, Air Force Reserve Officers Training Corps, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. He became chief of staff of the Fourth Allied Tactical Air Force in March 1975.

He is a command pilot astronaut. His military decorations and awards include the Air Force Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star with three oak leaf clusters, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross with four oak leaf clusters, Bronze Star Medal, Air Medal with 16 oak leaf clusters, and the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award Ribbon with "V" device. For his achievements in the X-15 aircraft, General White received the Harmon International Aviators Trophy, the Collier Trophy and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Distinguished Service Medal.

He was promoted to the grade of major general effective Feb. 12, 1975, with date of rank July 1, 1972.

(Current as of December 1975)

Engage

Twitter
.@AFGlobalStrike opened the new “STRIKEWERX” Innovation Center on May 28, 2020. The center serves as a storefront t… https://t.co/Di7qcIxVMJ
Twitter
As we recognize 73 years of the Air Force's continuing defense of America, we also remember Sept. 17 was designated… https://t.co/vFZpLyVLt2
Twitter
In March 2020, the CV-22 Osprey fleet established the first flying crew chief program. A ceremony elevated five of… https://t.co/cQv1qMzu1A
Twitter
Addressing @AirForceAssoc's #vASC2020, @WILLROP3R, assistant secretary of the Air Force for acquisition, technology… https://t.co/ZjMJm0kSrX
Twitter
.@USAF_ACC guided @Offutt_AFB flood recovery efforts, executed $856 million in congressional funding to support 12,… https://t.co/YmfLdwPIcg
Twitter
As we celebrate 73 years, we remember heroes we're proud to have served with. In 1965, A1C William Pitsenbarger res… https://t.co/vTmZkWGg73
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Teammates — we hear you. Continuing in unprecedented times....managing official/primary duties, child care, virtual s…
Twitter
In partnership w/the Cyber Innovation Center in Bossier City, Louisiana, @AFGlobalStrike developed the Portfolio-le… https://t.co/xyOGprp9By
Twitter
Since the outbreak COVID-19, @AirMobilityCmd has flown 306 sorties providing aeromedical evacuation, airlift, and a… https://t.co/9bdqVfSj40
Twitter
The first two KC-46A assigned to the @USAFReserve were delivered to the 916th Airlift Wing, @SJAFB, North Carolina… https://t.co/brcVdrqOAY
Twitter
In Aug 2020, the USAF pushed to field hypersonic weapons after a final captive-carry test of the AGM-183A Air-launc… https://t.co/c8LN43plk1
Twitter
As we celebrate 73 years, we honor the heroes we're proud to have served with. Today we pay tribute to MSgt John A… https://t.co/YhOCcbdyuR
Twitter
To better meet the demands of current & future all-domain conflicts, @USAF_ACC integrated Intelligence, Surveillanc… https://t.co/UkN0SOLc0E
Twitter
RT @WILLROP3R: @DoDCTO @DeptofDefense @usairforce Hypervelocity Guns + Hypervelocity Decision Making = Next-Generation Base Defense! Simply…
Twitter
Click the 🔗for more on the birth of the USAF #USAF73 https://t.co/s1QSobcE4w
Twitter
Under the Department of the Air Force, the act established the #USAF, headed by the Chief of Staff. September 18, 1… https://t.co/GpMkMCwxvF
Twitter
Shortly after WWII, the National Security Act of 1947 became law. It created the Department of the Air Force, heade… https://t.co/VwZ9eLjhgc
Twitter
By March 1, 1935, the General Headquarters Air Force (GHQAF) became operational and assumed command and control ove… https://t.co/O4jpV3hssM
Twitter
On May 24, 1918 the War Department officially recognized these two agencies as the Air Service of @USArmy. #USAF73
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,278,091
Follow Us