Lt. Gen. Christopher F. Burne is The Judge Advocate General, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Arlington, Virginia. In that capacity, General Burne serves as the Legal Adviser to the Secretary of the Air Force, the Chief of Staff, and all officers and agencies of the Department of the Air Force. He directs all judge advocates in the performance of their duties and is responsible for the professional oversight of more than 2,200 judge advocates, 350 civilian attorneys, 1,400 enlisted paralegals and 500 civilians in the Total Force Judge Advocate General's Corps worldwide. General Burne oversees military justice, operational and international law, all civil law and litigation functions, and personal legal assistance to military members and their families.
General Burne is a native of Dunmore, Pennsylvania. He received a direct commission in 1983. Following the lead of his father, a decorated World War II Eighth Air Force B-24 bombardier, General Burne’s first assignment was to an Eighth Air Force bomber base in Plattsburgh, New York. Since then, he has served in a variety of legal adviser and leadership positions at every level of command, to include seven tours as a staff judge advocate and as director of the Secretary of the Air Force’s Executive Issues Team. In 1991, he deployed to the United Arab Emirates during Operation Desert Storm as the staff judge advocate for an aerial refueling wing. For his service in three major commands, including a combat theater of operations, General Burne was named the 1991 Air Force Outstanding Judge Advocate of the Year. In 1995, General Burne again deployed to Southwest Asia, this time to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to serve as the Joint Task Force-Southwest Asia Staff Judge Advocate. Following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, he served as the senior judge advocate on the Air Force Crisis Action Team directing mobilization and response operations from the Pentagon. General Burne is admitted to practice law before the United States Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
Prior to becoming The 17th Judge Advocate General of the Air Force, General Burne served as the Staff Judge Advocate, Headquarters Air Combat Command, Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia.
1980 Bachelor of Arts degree in history and law enforcement, University of Scranton, Pa.
1983 Juris Doctor, The Dickinson School of Law, Pa.
1986 Squadron Officer School, by correspondence
1993 Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
1998 Air War College, by seminar
2003 Master of Science degree in national security strategy, National War College, Washington, D.C.
1. January 1984 - April 1987, Chief, Civil Law and Chief, Military Justice, 380th Bomb Wing, Plattsburgh AFB, N.Y.
2. April 1987 - August 1989, Executive Officer to the Staff Judge Advocate, Headquarters Strategic Air Command, Offutt AFB, Neb.
3. August 1989 - May 1990, Circuit Defense Counsel, 4th Judicial Circuit, Offutt AFB, Neb.
4. May 1990 - November 1991, Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, Western Space and Missile Center, Vandenberg AFB, Calif.
5. November 1991 - July 1992, Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, 20th Air Force, Vandenberg AFB, Calif.
6. July 1992 - June 1993, student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
7. July 1993 - July 1994, Staff Judge Advocate, 32nd Fighter Group, Soesterberg Air Base, the Netherlands
8. July 1994 - July 1997, Director, Operations Law, United States Central Command, MacDill AFB, Fla.
9. July 1997 - July 2000, Staff Judge Advocate, 20th Fighter Wing, Shaw AFB, S.C.
10. July 2000 - July 2002, Chief, Administrative Law, General Law Division, Office of The Judge Advocate General, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va.
11. July 2002 - June 2003, student, National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
12. June 2003 - July 2005, Staff Judge Advocate, Air Force District of Washington and 11th Wing, Bolling AFB, D.C.
13. July 2005 - December 2005, Director, Air Force Executive Issues Team, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va.
14. December 2005 - July 2006, Vice Commander, Air Force Legal Operations Agency, Bolling AFB, D.C.
15. July 2006 - April 2007, Staff Judge Advocate, Headquarters 8th Air Force, Barksdale AFB, La.
16. April 2007 – May 2014, Staff Judge Advocate, Headquarters Air Combat Command, Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va.
17. May 2014 – present, The Judge Advocate General, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va.
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Distinguished Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Legion of Merit
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with five oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
First Lieutenant Dec. 1, 1983
Captain July 6, 1984
Major Feb. 1, 1992
Lieutenant Colonel Feb. 1, 1997
Colonel May 1, 2002
Brigadier General Nov. 2, 2008
Lieutenant General May 23, 2014
(Current as of June 2018)