Lt. Gen. Ricky N. Rupp is the Commander, United States Forces, Japan, and Commander, Fifth Air Force, Pacific Air Forces, Yokota Air Base, Japan, and is the senior U.S. military representative in Japan. He is responsible for managing bilateral security issues, overseeing joint and bilateral exercises, administering the Status of Forces Agreement, improving combat readiness, and enhancing the quality of life of 66,000 military and Department of Defense civilian personnel and 45,000 dependents.
Lt. Gen. Rupp is a command pilot with more than 5,000 flying hours in various aircraft, including the C-130E/J, C-17 and T-38. He acquired operational flying experience during operations Desert Shield, Provide Promise, Allied Force, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. He has served as a squadron commander, vice wing commander, wing commander and at various staff assignments in the major command and sub-unified command levels within the Department of Defense. Prior to his current assignment, he was dual-hatted as the Commander of the Air Force District of Washington and the 320th Air Expeditionary Wing, headquartered at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland.
1988 Bachelor of Business Arts, Accounting, Southwest Texas State University, San Marcos
1996 Distinguished Graduate, Squadron Officers School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
1996 Master of Applied Science, Aeronautical Science, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Columbus AFB, Miss.
2003 Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2003 Master of Applied Science, Military Operational Art and Science, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2004 School of Advanced Air and Space Studies, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2004 Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence
2004 Master of Applied Science, Airpower Art and Science, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2010 Air Force Fellow, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, D.C.
2011 Joint Professional Military Education II, Norfolk Naval Air Station, Va.
2015 Capstone Course for General Officers, Joint Military Education III, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
2015 Joint Military Attaché School, Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling, Washington, D.C.
2018 Leadership Decision Making Course, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.
2018 Advanced Senior Leader Development, Center for Creative Leadership, Warrenton, Va.
2019 Strategy Workshop, Olin School of Business, Washington University, St. Louis
2021 Joint Force Maritime Component Commander Course, Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads, Va.
2022 Pinnacle Course, National Defense University, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
1. May 1989–May 1990, Student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Reese Air Force Base, Texas
2. June 1990–October 1990, Student, C-130 Combat Crew Training, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
3. October 1990–November 1993, C-130 Aircraft Commander, 37th Tactical Airlift Squadron, Rhein-Main Air Base, Germany
4. November 1993–December 1996, Assistant Flight Commander, 50th Flying Training Squadron, Columbus AFB, Miss.
5. December 1996–June 2000, Wing Plans Chief and later Wing Executive Officer, 437th Airlift Wing, Charleston AFB, S.C.
6. June 2000–July 2002, Chief, C-17 Requirements, Headquarters Air Mobility Command, Scott AFB, Ill.
7. August 2002–June 2003, Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
8. July 2003–June 2004, Student, School of Advanced Air and Space Studies, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
9. August 2004–May 2005, Operations Officer, 17th Airlift Squadron, Charleston AFB, S.C.
10. June 2005–May 2007, Commander, 14th AS, Charleston AFB, S.C.
11. June 2007–July 2009, Acting Executive Secretary and Military Assistant to the Executive Secretary Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va.
12. August 2009–May 2010, Air Force Fellow, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, D.C.
13. June 2010–June 2011, Vice Commander, 18th Wing, Kadena AB, Japan
14. June 2011–June 2013, Commander, 22nd Air Refueling Wing, McConnell AFB, Kan.
15. June 2013–March 2015, Special Assistant to the Commander, United Nations Command/Combined Forces
Command/United States Forces Korea, Yongsan, South Korea
16. March 2015–September 2015, Student, Joint Military Attaché School, Defense Intelligence Agency, Joint Base Anacostia Bolling, Washington, D.C.
17. September 2015–June 2017, Senior Defense Official and Defense Attaché U.S. Embassy, Tel Aviv, Israel
18. June 2017–July 2019, Director of Operations, Headquarters U.S. Transportation Command, Scott AFB, Ill.
19. July 2019–August 2021 Commander, Air Force District of Washington, Joint Base Andrews, Md.
20. August 2021–present, Commander, United States Forces Japan and Fifth Air Force, Yokota AB, Japan
SUMMARY OF JOINT ASSIGNMENTS
1. June 2007–July 2009, Acting Executive Secretary and Military Assistant to the Executive Secretary Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va., as a lieutenant colonel
2. June 2013–March 2015, Special Assistant to the Commander, United Nations Command/Combined Forces Command/United States Forces Korea, Yongsan, South Korea, as a colonel
3. September 2015–June 2017, Senior Defense Official and Defense Attaché U.S. Embassy, Tel Aviv, Israel, as a brigadier general
4. June 2017–July 2019, Director of Operations, U.S. Transportation Command, Scott Air Force Base, Ill., as a major general
5. August 2021–present, Commander, United States Forces, Japan, Yokota Air Base, Japan, as a lieutenant general
Rating: command pilot
Flight Hours: more than 5,000
Aircraft Flown: C-130E, C-130J, E-3, T-1, T-37, T-38, C-17, KC-135, UH-1N, and KC-46
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Air Force Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Legion of Merit
Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Aerial Achievement Medal with oak leaf clusters
Air and Space Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Iraq Campaign Medal
Afghanistan Campaign Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 4, 1989
First Lieutenant May 4, 1991
Captain May 4, 1993
Major July 1, 2000
Lieutenant Colonel April 1, 2004
Colonel Aug. 1, 2009
Brigadier General Nov. 7, 2014
Major General June 2, 2018
Lieutenant General Aug. 27, 2021
(Current as of October 2023)