Colonel Richard G. Adams is the Commander, 168th Wing, Alaska Air National Guard, Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The 168th Wing provides the U.S. Air Force the capabilities of global reach and vigilance through the combined operations of air refueling, missile warning, and space surveillance. The unit maintains a constant watch and commitment for Pacific Air Forces, Northern and Air Force Space Commands, and the Alaskan North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) Region.
Col. Adams was commissioned into the Air Force as a distinguished graduate through the four-year ROTC program at the University of Colorado, Boulder. After completing Undergraduate Pilot Training at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, he was assigned to the 50th Airlift Squadron, Little Rock AFB, Arkansas. During this assignment, he flew in Operations CONTINUE HOPE, RESTORE DEMOCRACY, SOUTHERN WATCH and JOINT ENDEAVOR. Col. Adams had follow on assignments to the 76th AS, Ramstein Air Base, Germany, and the 517th AS, Elmendorf AFB, Alaska. In April 2004 he transferred from the active duty Air Force to the Alaska Air National Guard and joined the 144th Airlift Squadron, Kulis Air National Guard Base, Alaska. Col. Adams graduated from the United States Air Force Weapons School in June 2005, and has held numerous positions within the 144th AS, to include Chief of Tactics, Operations Officer, and Commander. He has deployed five times in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM, which included a deployment in 2011 as commander, 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron, Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan.
Prior to his current position, Col. Adams served as the 168th Operations Group Commander, Alaska Air National Guard, Eielson AFB, Alaska.
1991 Bachelor of Arts, History, University of Colorado Boulder, Colo.
1998 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2005 USAF Weapons Instructor Course, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
2007 Air Command and Staff College, by correspondence
2013 Aircraft Mishap Investigation Course, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
2014 Safety Board President Course, Davis Monthan AFB, Ariz.
2015 Inspector General Training Course, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
2016 Air War College, by correspondence
1. March 1992 – March 1993, Student, Pilot Training, Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas
2. March 1993 – August 1996, C-130 Pilot, 50th Airlift Squadron, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
3. October 1996 – April 2000, C-21 Evaluator Pilot, 76th Airlift Squadron, Ramstein AB, Germany
4. August 2000 – March 2004, C-130 Evaluator Pilot, 517th Airlift Squadron, Elmendorf AFB, Alaska
5. April 2004 – August 2013, C-130 Evaluator Pilot, Chief of Tactics, Operations Officer, Commander, 144th Airlift Squadron, Kulis Air National Guard Base and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER), Alaska
6. May – September 2011, Commander, 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron, Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan
7. August 2013 – July 2015, 176th Wing Chief of Safety, JBER, Alaska
8. July 2015 – February 2016, 176th Wing Inspector General, JBER, Alaska
9. February 2016 – April 2017, Deputy Commander, 176th Operations Group, JBER, Alaska
10. April 2017 – June 2018, Vice Wing Commander, 168th Wing, Eielson AFB, Alaska
11. June 2018 – October 2019, Commander, 168th Operations Group, Eielson AFB, Alaska
12. October 2019 – Present, Commander, 168th Wing, Eielson AFB, Alaska
Rating: Command Pilot
Flight hours: 5800
Combat hours: 278
Aircraft flown: C-21, C-130 E/H1/H2/H3, KC-135R, T-37, T-38
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Aerial Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster
Combat Readiness Medal with nine oak leaf clusters
Afghanistan Campaign Medal with oak leaf cluster
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant, Oct. 8, 1991
First Lieutenant, Oct. 8, 1993
Captain, Oct. 8, 1995
Major, Aug. 1, 2002
Lieutenant Colonel, Aug. 1, 2009
Colonel, Dec. 2, 2017
(Current as of November 2019)