Chevalier P. “Chevy” Cleaves, a member of the Senior Executive Service, is Director, Diversity and Inclusion, Deputy Chief of Staff for Manpower, Personnel and Services, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C. He is responsible for leading diversity and inclusion transformation for the Air Force’s 632,000 active duty, Air National Guard, Reserve and civilian personnel. His duties include creating sustainable change while integrating diversity and inclusion-focused leadership with operational, functional and talent management strategies and processes.
Mr. Cleaves earned his commission in 1985 through the U.S. Air Force Academy. Serving three tours as a T-38 instructor pilot and three flying KC-135s, he commanded one of the most heavily tasked tanker squadrons in the Air Force. He played a critical role in the response to Sept. 11, 2001, events as the lead Checkmate team chief. Later as a Joint Staff division chief, he was responsible for the information operations career force and for delivering integrated, joint special technical operations capabilities to unified commanders. Mr. Cleaves was nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate to lead the U.S. Air Force Academy admissions directorate, where the superintendent selected him to lead the USAFA’s diversity and inclusion efforts. He retired in the grade of colonel in 2010. He then entered the private sector as vice president, global diversity and inclusion for a Fortune 300 company. Prior to his current position, Mr. Cleaves led diversity and inclusion business integration for the Internal Revenue Service.
1985 Bachelor of Science degree in Basic Sciences, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.
1992 Distinguished graduate, Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1994 Honor graduate, Master of Arts degree in Human Resource Development, Webster University, Webster Groves, Mo.
1996 Acquisitions Professional Development Program Level 1 and 2 Academics, Defense Acquisitions University, Fort Belvoir, Va.
1998 Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2000 Distinguished graduate, Joint Aerospace Command and Control Course, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2005 Joint Advanced Warfighter School, Norfolk, Va.
2005 Master of Science degree in Joint Campaign Planning and Strategy, National Defense University, Norfolk, Va.
2011 Next Generation Executive Program, The Partnership, Boston, Mass.
June 1985 – June 1986, Student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, 47th Flying Training Wing, Laughlin AFB, Texas
June 1986 – October 1986, Student, KC-135A Combat Crew Training School, Castle AFB, Calif.
November 1986 – May 1989, KC-135A Pilot/Standardization and Evaluation Pilot, 379th Bomb Wing, Wurtsmith AFB, Mich.
May 1989 – February 1992, T-38 Instructor Pilot/Check Pilot/Assistant Flight Commander/Flight Commander, undergraduate pilot training, 71st Flying Training Wing, Vance AFB, Okla.
February 1992 – January 1994, Chief, B-1 Companion Trainer Program (T-38A), 384th Bomb Wing, McConnell AFB, Kan.
January 1994 – July 1994, Chief, B-2 Aircrew Training Device Element, 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman AFB, Mo.
July 1994 – November 1996, Wing Executive Officer, 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman AFB, Mo.
November 1996 – June 1997, Deputy Chief, Wing Safety, 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman AFB, Mo.
August 1997 – June 1998, Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
August 1998 – November 1998, Student, KC-135R Combat Crew Training School, Altus AFB, Okla.
November 1998 – December 1999, Aircraft Commander/Instructor Pilot/Flight Commander/Assistant Operations Officer, 384th Air Refueling Squadron, McConnell AFB, Kan.
December 1999 – July 2000, Wing Executive Officer, 22nd Air Refueling Wing, McConnell AFB, Kan.
August 2000 – February 2002, Chief, Pacific Command/Southern Command Strategy Branch, Checkmate Division, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
April 2002 – December 2003, Commander, 351st Air Refueling Squadron, RAF Mildenhall, England; and Commander, 100th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron, RAF Akrotiri, Cyprus
December 2003 – June 2004, Director of Staff, Headquarters Third Air Force, RAF Mildenhall, England
August 2004 – June 2005, Student, Joint Advanced Warfighting School, National Defense University, Norfolk, Va.
June 2005 – May 2006, Chief, Information Operations Policy and Doctrine Branch, Joint Staff/J-3, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
May 2006 – September 2007, Chief, Program Support Division, Joint Staff/J-3, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
October 2007 – March 2010, Director of Admissions and Head of Diversity and Inclusion, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.
March 2010 – December 2012, Vice President, Global Diversity and Inclusion, Boston Scientific Corporation, Natick, Mass.
March – November 2014, Director, Diversity and Inclusion Business Integration, Internal Revenue Service, Washington, D.C.
November 2014 – present, Director, Diversity and Inclusion, Deputy Chief of Staff for Manpower, Personnel and Services, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
Rating: command pilot
Flight hours: over 2,600 hours (160 combat/combat support)
Aircraft flown: T-38A, KC-135A/R/T, and T-37B
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Defense Superior Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with five oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Achievement Medal
Combat Readiness Medal
2011 Cornell Certified Diversity Professional / Advanced Practitioner, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.
PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS AND ASSOCIATIONS
Air Force Academy Association of Graduates
Air Force Association
Order of Daedalians
Norfolk Vintage Pilot Association
Military Officers Association of America
Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (2012-2013 Chairman, Industrial Partners Council; 2012 – present, Management Committee member)
Tuskegee Airmen, Inc.
(Current as of January 2015)