Colonel Rodney L. Simpson is the Commander, 386th Air Expeditionary Wing, Ali Al Salem Air Base, Kuwait. The wing, comprised of over 6,000 Airmen and coalition partners, provides air mobility, precision strike, personnel recovery, electronic attack, logistics operations, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance assets in support of operations throughout Southwest Asia. Approximately 410 of the wing’s Airmen are filling Joint Expeditionary Taskings in support of U.S. Army combat support requirements at forward operating bases in Southwest Asia.
Colonel Simpson graduated from the University of Kentucky with a BBA in Finance and earned his commission as a Distinguished Graduate of the ROTC program. He was awarded a Master of Aeronautical Science in Aeronautics and Aviation Management in 2006 from Embry Riddle University, Florida. Colonel Simpson is a graduate of the United States Air Force Weapons School, the United States Army Command and General Staff College, and the Air War College. He has served in a variety of positions at the squadron, group, MAJCOM and Headquarters Air Force levels to include flying Squadron Command in garrison and deployed Squadron and Group command. His staff assignments include tours as Director of Operations, 18th Air Force, Division Chief positions in both Air Mobility Command and US Air Forces Europe and Air Forces Africa as well as Executive Officer for the Director, Air Force Programs, Chief, Program Integration and Inter Theater Airlift, Global Mobility Panel, Headquarters Air Force. As a theater airlift aviator, he has flown numerous combat missions in direct support of Operations SOUTHERN WATCH, JOINT ENDEAVOR, JOINT GUARD, JOINT FORGE, ALLIED FORCE, ENDURING FREEDOM and INHERENT RESOLVE. Colonel Simpson is a Master Navigator, having logged over 3,000 hours in the C-130 Hercules, with over 500 combat and combat support hours.
Prior to assuming his current position, he was the Chief, Contingency Operations Division, Air Mobility Command, Scott Air Force Base, Ill.
1993 Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Ky.
1999 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. (Distinguished Graduate)
1999 United States Air Force Weapons School, Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark. (Top Flyer)
2004 Air Command and Staff College, Correspondence
2006 United States Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
2006 Master of Aeronautical Science in Aeronautics and Aviation Management, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Fla.
2008 Air War College, Correspondence
1. November 1993 – July 1994, Student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Columbus AFB, Miss.
2. August 1994 – July 1995, Student, Undergraduate Navigator Training, Randolph AFB, Texas
3. August 1995 – December 1995, C-130 Initial Qualification Course, Little Rock AFB, Arkansas
4. January 1996 – April 1999, C-130E/H Instructor Navigator, Yokota Air Base, Japan
5. April 1999 – June 1999, Student, Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
6. July 1999 – December 1999, Student, USAF Weapons School, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
7. January 2000 – May 2003, C-130H Instructor/Evaluator Navigator; Chief, 40 AS Standardization and Evaluation; Chief, 317 Airlift Group Weapons and Tactics
8. May 2003 – June 2005, Cadre, USAF Weapons School, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
9. June 2005 – June 2006, Student, US Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, Kan.
10. June 2006 – June 2009, Executive Officer, Director of Programs and Chief, Program Integration/Inter-Theater Airlift, Global Mobility Panel, Headquarters Air Force, The Pentagon, Washington D.C.
11. July 2009 – June 2013, Commander, formerly Director of Operations, 30th Airlift Squadron, Cheyenne, Wyo.
12. July 2013 – September 2014, Deputy Chief, Operations and Training Division, USAFE/AFAFARICA, Ramstein AB, Germany
13. September 2014 – June 2015, Chief, Operation Operational and Adaptive Plans, USAFE/AFARICA
14. June 2015 – June 2016, Commander, 387th Air Expeditionary Group, Abdullah-Al-Mubarak AB, Kuwait
15. July 2016 – August 2018, Chief, Combat Operations Division, Air Mobility Command, Scott AFB, Ill.
16. August 2018 – December 2018, Director of Operations, 18th Air Force, Scott AFB, Ill.
17. December 2018 – July 2019, Chief, Contingency Operations Division, Air Mobility Command, Scott AFB, Ill.
18. July 2019 – Present, Commander, 386th Air Expeditionary Wing, Ali Al Salem Air Base, Kuwait
Rating: Master Navigator
Flight hours: Over 3,000
Aircraft: T-43A, T-37B, C-130E/H1/H2/H3/J
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Legion of Merit
Meritorious Service Medal with seven oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with six oak leaf clusters
Aerial Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Achievement Medal
National Defense Service Medal with bronze star
Afghanistan Campaign Medal with bronze star
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Humanitarian Service Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 8, 1993
First Lieutenant August 11, 1995
Captain August 11, 1997
Major January 1, 2004
Lieutenant Colonel December 1, 2008
Colonel April 1, 2015
(Current as of July 19)