Lisa S. Disbrow is the Under Secretary of the Air Force. She is responsible for the affairs of the Department of the Air Force, including the organizing, training, equipping and providing for the welfare of approximately 660,000 active duty, Guard, Reserve and civilian Airmen and their families, worldwide. She oversees the Air Force’s annual budget of more than $132 billion and directs strategy and policy development, risk management, weapons acquisition, technology investments and human resource management across a global enterprise. Ms. Disbrow is responsible for implementing decisions of the President and Congress, and fulfilling Combatant Commanders’ current and future operational requirements. She represents the Air Force on the Deputy Secretary of Defense’s Management Action Group, DOD’s corporate decision-making body, and on the Defense Space Council. From January 2017 - May 2017, prior to the confirmation of Dr. Heather Wilson as Secretary of the Air Force, Ms. Disbrow served as the Acting Secretary of the Air Force.
In 2014, Ms. Disbrow was confirmed by the Senate as the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Financial Management and Comptroller, the principal senior official on all financial matters. She was responsible for financial policy, management, execution of an annual budget of more than $130 billion, workforce development for more than 10,000 financial managers worldwide and providing analytic support services. She directed the development of the five-year programming plan, prepared for the first congressionally-mandated audit, oversaw the Air Force Cost Analysis Agency and led accounting and financial operations.
Ms. Disbrow was commissioned into the U.S. Air Force in 1985 following her graduation from the University of Virginia and served on active duty until 1992. Her assignments included intelligence alert officer, Africa/Middle East military political analyst and chief of electronic intelligence analysis. She deployed in support of operations Desert Storm and Southern Watch and was selected for the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Advanced Language and Area Studies program.
After Desert Storm, Ms. Disbrow transitioned to the Air Force Reserve, and accepted a civilian position as a senior systems engineer for the National Reconnaissance Office. In that capacity, she helped develop programs and requirements to improve national intelligence support to tactical users, including operational and analytical systems.
From 1995-2014, Ms. Disbrow held a variety of positions on the Joint Staff as a senior civilian, including the Joint Staff Vice Director for Force Structure, Resources and Assessment. She was responsible for developing joint warfighting requirements, advising on force assignment to combatant commanders, conducting force structure and warfighting studies and evaluating defense plans, programs and strategies for the Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff. Additionally, she supported the vice chairman in his role as Chairman of the Joint Requirements Oversight Council.
While assigned to the Joint Staff, from 2006-2007, Ms. Disbrow was detailed to the President’s National Security Advisor as the Special Advisor for Policy Implementation and Execution at the White House. She assisted in planning and implementing the National Security Strategy and advised the White House on issues across the federal government.
Her 23 years of uniformed service culminated in 2008 when she retired as a colonel from the Air Force Reserve while serving as Special Assistant to the Director of Programs, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, having previously served as an individual mobilization augmentee intelligence operations officer in “Checkmate” and as an operations staff officer for strategy and concepts with the “Skunks.”
1984 Bachelor of Arts, Foreign Affairs, University of Virginia, Charlottesville
1990 Master of Arts, International Affairs, George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
1991 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1997 Air Command and Staff College, by correspondence
2002 Master of Science, National Security Strategy, National War College, Washington, D.C.
CIVILIAN CAREER CHRONOLOGY
1. 1993 - 1995, Senior Systems Engineer, National Reconnaissance Office, Washington, D.C.
2. 1995 - 1997, Operations Analyst, Joint Staff/J-8, Washington, D.C.
3. 1997 - 2003, Deputy Chief, Studies, Analysis and Gaming Division, Joint Staff/J-8, Washington, D.C.
4. 2003 - 2006, Deputy Director for Force Management, Joint Staff/J-8, Washington, D.C.
5. 2006 - 2007, Special Advisor for Policy, Implementation and Execution, National Security Council, The White House, Washington, D.C.
6. 2007 - 2009, Principal Deputy Director, Force Management, Joint Staff/J-8, Washington, D.C.
7. 2009 - 2014, Vice Director, Force Structure, Resources, and Assessment, Joint Staff/J-8, Washington, D.C.
8. 2014 - 2015, Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Financial Management and Comptroller, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
9. 2015 - 2016, Acting Under Secretary of the Air Force and Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Financial Management and Comptroller, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
10. 2016 - Under Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
11. 2017 - Acting Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
12. 2017 - present, Under Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
1. May 1986 - July 1986, Intelligence Analyst, Fort Belvoir, Va.
2. July 1986 - March 1988, Indications and Warning Alert Officer, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
3. March 1988 - May 1989, Africa Military Political Analyst and Assistant Executive Officer to ACS Intel, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
4. May 1989 - June 1991, Defense Advanced Language and Area Studies Program, George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
5. June 1991 - December 1992, Chief, Electronic Intelligence Analysis, Shaw AFB, S.C.
6. December 1992 - August 2001, Intelligence Operations Officer, HQ USAF/XOO (Checkmate), the Pentagon, Washington, D.C. (Individual Mobilization Augmentee, USAF Reserve)
7. August 2001 - February 2003, Operations Staff Officer for Strategy and Concepts, HQ USAF/XOXS (Skunks), the Pentagon, Washington, D.C. (Individual Mobilization Augmentee, USAF Reserve)
8. February 2003 - December 2008 – Special Assistant to the Director of Programs, HQ USAF (Engine Room), the Pentagon, Washington, D.C. (Individual Mobilization Augmentee, USAF Reserve)
MAJOR CIVILIAN AWARDS
1996 - 1997, Joint Distinguished Civilian Service Award
2000 - 2001, Joint Meritorious Civilian Service Award
2006 Joint Meritorious Civilian Service Award
2008 Meritorious Executive Presidential Rank Award
2010 DoD Distinguished Civilian Service Award
2013 Distinguished Executive Presidential Rank Award
2014 Lieutenant General Glenn A. Kent Leadership Award
2014 CJCS Joint Distinguished Civilian Service Award
2017 USAF Exceptional Civilian Service Award
2017 US Army Distinguished Civilian Service Award
MAJOR MILITARY AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Legion of Merit
Meritorious Service Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal
National Defense Service Medal
Southwest Asia Service Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Armed Forces Reserve Medal
(Current as of June 2017)