Colonel George M. Buch Jr. is Commander, 386th Air Expeditionary Wing, Ali Al Salem Air Base, Kuwait. The wing, comprised of over 4,300 Airmen, coalition, and joint partners at six geographically separated locations, provides air mobility, precision strike, personnel recovery, electronic attack, logistics operations, and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance assets in support of operations through Southwest Asia. Approximately 300 of the wing’s Airmen are filling Joint Expeditionary Taskings in support of U.S. Army combat support requirements at forward operating bases in Southeast Asia.
Colonel Buch was commissioned at the United States Air Force Academy. He attended Joint Undergraduate Navigator Training at Pensacola Naval Air Station, Florida and Randolph Air Force Base, Texas. Colonel Buch began his operational flying career in the C-130E at Yokota Air Base, Japan as an Instructor Navigator. After serving at Yokota Air Base, he was selected for assignment to Pope Air Force Base as an Evaluator Navigator in the C-130E. Next, Colonel Buch was assigned to Little Rock AFB working in Wing Plans and Programs, and then became the Chief of Command Post.
While at Little Rock, Colonel Buch was selected as a Presidential Advance Agent for AF One. After this assignment, he attended AMC’s Advanced Study of Air Mobility at the Expeditionary Center at Ft. Dix. Colonel Buch then served as the 571st Global Mobility Squadron Director of Operations at Travis AFB. He next served as the Deputy Chief of the Operations Integration Division for J3 and the Intermodal Programs Division, Enterprise Readiness Center, United States Transportation Command, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois. Following an assignment as the commander of the 728th Air Mobility Squadron at Incirlik AB, Turkey, Colonel Buch was then chosen as the Deputy Director, Revitalizing Squadrons, Air Force Strategic Integration Group, Office of the Air Force Chief of Staff, Pentagon, Washington DC. After the Pentagon, he was then chosen to command the 721 Air Mobility Operations Group at Ramstein Air Base, Germany executing AMC’s global reach mission.
Prior to his current assignment, Colonel Buch was the Director of Safety at United States Air Forces Europe and Air Forces Africa, Ramstein Air Base, Germany. He is a master navigator with more than 2,700 flying hours to include over 560 combat and combat support hours in the C-130E. He has three children George, Aidan and Sadie.
1997 Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Engineering, USAF Academy, Colo.
2002 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2006 Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence
2007 MBA, Military Management, Touro University International
2010 MS, Logistics, Advanced Study of Air Mobility, Ft. Dix, NJ
2011 Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence
2013 Joint Professional Military Education II, Joint Forces Staff College, Norfolk Naval Station, Va.
1. Aug 1997 – Jan 1998: Aeronautical Engineer, Department of Aeronautics, USAF Academy, Colo.
2. Jan 1998 – Jul 1998: Student; Joint Undergraduate Navigator Training; VT10 , Pensacola Naval Air Station, Fl.
3. Jul 1998 – Sep 1999: Student, Joint Undergraduate Navigator Training; 562 FTS, Randolph Air Force Base, Texas
4. Sep 1999 – Sep 2002: Chief Nav Scheduler/Training, C-130E Instructor Navigator; 36 AS, Yokota Air Base, Japan
5. Sep 2002 – Jan 2003: Flight Commander, AWADS C-130E Instructor Navigator; 41 AS, Pope AFB, N.C.
6. Jan 2003 – Apr 2005: Deputy Chief of Stan/Eval, AWADS C-130E Evaluator Navigator; 41 AS, Pope AFB, N.C.
7. Apr 2005 – May 2006: Chief Evaluator Navigator; 43 OG, Pope AFB, N.C.
8. May 2006 – Mar 2007: Executive Officer, C-130E FTU Instructor, Evaluator Navigator; 62 AS, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
9. Mar 2007 – Jan 2008: Crisis Action Team Coordinator; 314 AW, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
10. Jan 2008 – Jun 2008: Commander’s Senior Staff Coordinator; 314 AW, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
11. Jun 2008 – Jun 2009: Chief, Command Post; 19 AW, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
12. Mar 2007 – Jun 2009: Presidential Advance Agent for Air Force One; 314 AW, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
13. Jun 2009 – Jul 2010: IDE Student, Advanced Study of Air Mobility; USAF Expeditionary Center, Ft Dix, N.J.
14. Jul 2010 – Jul 2012: Director of Operations, 571st Global Mobility Sq., Travis AFB, Calif.
15. Jul 2012 – Sep 2013: Deputy, Operations Integration Division, USTRANSCOM J3, Scot AFB, Ill.
16. Sep 2013 – Jun 2014: Deputy, Intermodal Programs Division, USTRANSCOM ERC, Scott AFB, Ill.
17. Jun 2014 – Jun 2016: Commander, 728th Air Mobility Squadron, Incirlik AB, Turkey
18. Jun 2016 – Sep 2016: Deputy, Global Mobility Division, HAF/A3, Pentagon, Washington D.C.
19. Sep 2016 – May 2018: Operations Team Chief, Revitalizing AF Squadrons Core Team, Office of the Air Force Chief of Staff, U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington D.C.
20. May 2018 – Jul 2019: Deputy Director, Revitalizing Squadrons, Air Force Strategic Integration Group, Office of the Air Force Chief of Staff, U.S. Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington D.C.
21. Jul 2019 – Jul 2021: Group Commander, 721st Air Mobility Operations Group, Ramstein AB, Germany
22. Jul 2021 – Jul 2022: Director of Safety, Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa, Ramstein AB, Germany
23. Jul 2022 – Present: Commander, 386th Air Expeditionary Wing, Ali Al Salem AB, Kuwait
Rating: Master Navigator
Flight hours: 2,800+, Combat hours 560+
Aircraft flown: T-1, C-130E, C-130H2, C-130H3, C-130J
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Legion of Merit
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with one oak leaf cluster
Aerial Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster
Air and Space Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION [MILITARY ONLY]
Second Lieutenant, 28 May 1997
First Lieutenant, 28 May 1999
Captain, 28 May 2001
Major, 1 Jan 2007
Lieutenant Colonel, 1 April 2012
Colonel, 1 September 2018
(CURRENT AS OF AUGUST 2022)