Lieutenant General Richard J. Trzaskoma is commander, 22nd Air Force, Travis Air Force Base, Calif.

General Trzaskoma was born in 1937, in Hamtramck, Mich., where he graduated from Hamtramck High School. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in political science from the University of Michigan in 1959 and a master of public administration degree from Auburn University in 1975. The general completed Squadron Officer School in 1964, the National Security Management Course in 1974, Air War College in 1975, the University of Michigan's Executive Management Program in 1982 and Harvard University's National and International Security Management Program in 1989.

He began his military career by enlisting in the Air National Guard in July 1954 and served as a medical laboratory technician with the 127th Tactical Fighter Wing in Romulus, Mich. The general was commissioned as a distinguished graduate of the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps Program in July 1959. After completing primary pilot training at Moore Air Force Base, Texas, and basic pilot training at Laredo Air Force Base, Texas, he was assigned as a C-124 pilot with the 1501st Air Transport Wing at Travis Air Force Base in November 1960.

In October 1962 General Trzaskoma transferred to Goose Air Base, Labrador, where he flew SC-54s as a rescue crew commander. He returned to flying C-124s in February 1964 as an aircraft commander at Dover Air Force Base, Del. From June 1965 to June 1967 the general served as aide-de-camp and pilot for the chief of the Air Force Section, Military Assistance Advisory Group, Tehran, Iran. He then was assigned to the 63rd Military Airlift Wing at Norton Air Force Base, Calif., as a combat airlift flight examiner and flight simulator instructor in the C-141.

The general was assigned to Scott Air Force Base, Ill., in March 1970 and served as an operations inspector on the Military Airlift Command inspector general staff, and as executive to the command's vice commander and personnel staff officer. In March 1973 he transferred to Clark Air Base, Philippines, as chief of the airlift command post and, later, as operations officer of the 604th Military Airlift Support Squadron.

After graduating from Air War College in June 1975, he returned to Travis Air Force Base as assistant director of command and control for 22nd Air Force. He became assistant deputy commander for operations of the 60th Military Airlift Wing in May 1977 and assumed command of the 60th Military Airlift Group in June 1978. The general commanded the 60th Military Airlift Wing from February 1979 to May 1980. He then transferred to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., as deputy director of personnel plans, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Manpower and Personnel. In August 1981 General Trzaskoma was assigned as commander of the 834th Airlift Division, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. Returning to Scott Air Force Base in July 1983, the general served as assistant deputy chief of staff for operations for the Military Airlift Command, and in July 1984 became vice commander, 23rd Air Force, also at Scott. He became commander of the 322nd Airlift Division and deputy chief of staff for airlift for Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Ramstein Air Base, West Germany, in September 1985.

In November 1986 he became deputy chief of staff, programs and resources, Headquarters Military Airlift Command, Scott Air Force Base. He assumed his present command in July 1989.

The general is a command pilot with more than 7,000 flying hours. His military awards and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Air Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal.

He was promoted to lieutenant general May 16, 1991, with same date of rank.

(Current as of February 2021)