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MAJOR GENERAL EDWARD W. THOMAS JR.

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Maj. Gen. Edward W. Thomas Jr. is the Commander, Air Force Recruiting Service, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas. The Air Force Recruiting Service comprises more than 2,800 Airmen and civilians and approximately 1,040 recruiting offices across the U.S. and abroad. He is responsible for all enlisted accessions and a variety of officer accession programs. AFRS also manages all strategic marketing for the U.S. Air Force.

Maj. Gen. Thomas was commissioned in 1990 following his graduation from Texas A&M University. His staff assignments include serving as the Special Assistant for Public Affairs to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Director of Public Affairs for U.S. European Command, Director of Public Affairs for Pacific Air Forces, and Director of Current Operations for the Secretary of the Air Force Office of Public Affairs. Maj. Gen. Thomas also led the Air Force’s flagship publication, Airman Magazine and directed the NATO public affairs effort at Aviano Air Base, Italy, during the 1999 Kosovo air campaign. He holds a membership at the Royal College of Defence Studies in London, England, where he studied foreign relations in 2010 with senior and general officers from more than 40 nations. His commands have included the 341st Mission Support Squadron at Malmstrom AFB, Mont., the 673rd Mission Support Group at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, and Air University's Thomas N. Barnes Center for Enlisted Education at Maxwell AFB, Ala.

Prior to his current assignment, as the Director of Public Affairs, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C he was responsible for developing and executing global communication processes to build understanding and support for the Air Force.

EDUCATION
1990 Bachelor of Science, Journalism, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas
1992 Defense Information School, Fort Benjamin Harrison, Ind.
1995 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1998 Master of Arts, Organizational Management, George Washington University, Washington D.C.
2004 Master of Military Operational Art and Science, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2004 Information Warfare Applications Course, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2006 Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence
2010 Royal College of Defence Studies, London, England
2012 Leadership Enhancement Program, Center for Creative Leadership, Greensboro, N.C.
2012 Joint and Combined Warfighting School, Armed Forces Staff College, Norfolk, Virginia.

ASSIGNMENTS
1. March 1991 – September 1991, Student, Primary Jet Training, 35th Fighter Training Squadron, Reese AFB, Texas
2. September 1991 – January 1992, Student, Advanced Jet Training, 52nd Fighter Training Squadron, Reese AFB, Texas
3. January 1992 – May 1994, Deputy Chief, Public Affairs, 438th Airlift Wing, McGuire AFB, N.J.
4. May 1994 – July 1995, Executive Officer, Air Force News Agency, Kelly AFB, Texas
5. July 1995 – July 1996, Managing Editor, Airman Magazine, Air Force News Agency, Kelly AFB, Texas
6. July 1996 – May 1998, Air Force Intern, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
7. May 1998 – May 2001, Chief of Public Affairs, 31st Fighter Wing, Aviano AB, Italy
8. July 2001 – September 2002, Chief, National Affairs, Directorate of Public Affairs, Headquarters North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Space Command, Peterson AFB, Colo.
9. October 2002 – July 2003, Chief, National Affairs, Directorate of Public Affairs, Headquarters North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command, Peterson AFB, Colo.
10. August 2003 – June 2004, Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
11. July 2004 – June 2006, Commander, 341st Mission Support Squadron, Malmstrom AFB, Mont.
12. June 2006 – June 2007, Chief, Media Engagement Branch, Current Operations Division, Secretary of the Air Force Office of Public Affairs, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
13. June 2007 – March 2008, Chief, Current Operations Division, Secretary of the Air Force Office of Public Affairs, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
14. March 2008 – November 2009, Director of Public Affairs, Headquarters Pacific Air Forces, Hickam AFB, Hawaii
15. December 2009 – July 2010, Student, Royal College of Defence Studies, London, England
16. August 2010 – July 2012, Commander, 673rd Mission Support Group, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska
17. July 2012 – June 2013, Director, Public Affairs, U.S. European Command, Stuttgart, Germany
18. June 2013 – July 2015, Special Assistant for Public Affairs to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
19. August 2015 – June 2016, Commander, Thomas N. Barnes Center for Enlisted Education, Maxwell AFB, Gunter Annex, Ala.
20. June 2016 – June 2020, Director of Public Affairs, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
21. June 2020 - present, Commander, Air Force Recruiting Service, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas

SUMMARY OF JOINT ASSIGNMENTS
1. July 2001 – September 2002, Chief, National Affairs, Directorate of Public Affairs, Headquarters North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Space Command, Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., as a major
2. October 2002 – July 2003, Chief, National Affairs, Directorate of Public Affairs, Headquarters, North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command, Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., as a major
3. July 2012–June 2013, Director, Public Affairs, U.S. European Command, Stuttgart, Germany, as a colonel
4. June 2013–July 2015, Special Assistant for Public Affairs to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., as a colonel

MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal
Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal
Joint Service Achievement Medal
Air Force Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Kosovo Campaign Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Armed Forces Service medal
Nuclear Deterrence Operations Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
NATO Medal
National Defense Service Medal with bronze star
Air Force Recognition Ribbon

OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS
1995 Silver Anvil Award for Excellence in Crisis Communication, Public Relations Society of America
1999 Outstanding Air Force Public Affairs Company Grade Officer
2008 Outstanding Air Force Public Affairs Program

EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 10, 1990
First Lieutenant Oct. 6, 1992
Captain Oct. 6, 1994
Major Nov. 1, 2001
Lieutenant Colonel March 1, 2006
Colonel Oct. 1, 2009
Brigadier General May 2, 2016
Major General May 22, 2020

(Current as of June 2020)

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