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  Astronaut Kevin Chilton's post-NASA career

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Author Topic:   Astronaut Kevin Chilton's post-NASA career
Robert Pearlman

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 08-10-2005 06:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From News 12 KSLA-TV:
A former NASA astronaut takes over command of Barksdale's 8th Air Force Headquarters Wednesday. Lt. Gen. Kevin Chilton was on the maiden voyage of Space Shuttle Endeavour in May 1992. Chilton also commanded the third docking mission to the Russian space station Mir, which launched on March 22, 1996, with a crew of six aboard Atlantis.

Chilton comes to Barksdale from the Pentagon, where he was the Assistant Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force. A change of command ceremony is scheduled for 1pm Wednesday at Barksdale. Current 8th Air Force commander, Lt. Gen. Bruce Carlson, is heading to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, where he will become Commander of Air Force Material Command. Born in Los Angeles, the 50-year-old Chilton is married with four children and once played the guitar in a rock and roll band.

Jay Chladek

Posts: 2211
From: Bellevue, NE, USA
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 10-17-2007 07:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
General Kevin P. Chilton, the highest ranking former astronaut and veteran of three shuttle flights (STS-49, the first flight of Endeavour; STS-59, first SRL lab flight; and STS-76, the third Mir docking mission) has taken the reigns of U.S. Strategic Command based at Offutt AFB in Bellevue, Nebraska.

Chilton left NASA in 1998 to resume his career in the U.S. Air Force where he has climbed steadily through the ranks since then. Last posting before US Stratcom was Commander of U.S. Space Command at Peterson AFB in Colorado Springs.

Defense Dept. photo by U.S. Air Force Tech Sgt. Jerry Morrison
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates prepares to pass command of U.S. Strategic Command to Air Force Gen. Kevin Chilton during a ceremony at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., Oct. 17, 2007.

Chilton Takes U.S. Strategic Command Helm

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates today praised Air Force Gen. Kevin P. Chilton as the general ceremonially took the reins of U.S. Strategic Command.

Gates said Chilton, who began his tenure at STRATCOM on Oct. 3 after having commanded Air Force Space Command, has the skills and experience to lead the command forward in its critical role in the fight against terrorist threats.

Speaking at today's assumption-of-command ceremony at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., the secretary pointed to Chilton's long, trail-blazing career as prime experience for the STRATCOM job. Chilton was a test pilot on the F-4 Phantom II and F-15 Eagle aircraft, laid new groundwork during assignments at Air Force Space Command, and served as an astronaut aboard three space shuttle missions.

Chilton will tap into this experience to help the United States confront some of the most destructive threats it faces. These include terrorist groups working to get control of weapons of mass destruction and potential adversaries who might leverage information and space technologies to threaten the United States and its interests.

Gates called space-based capabilities critical in stopping the proliferation of dangerous materials. "It is through space that we can monitor the weapons we already know exist," he said. "It is through space that we can track adversaries attempting to acquire these weapons and then do something about it. It is through space that our troops and our leadership monitor the battlefield and communicate with each other.

"Therefore," Gates continued, "it is space that we must protect, especially as we expand its use."

China's successful test of an anti-satellite weapon earlier this year reinforced the importance of maintaining unfettered access to space, he said. "This test and other developments show that our own near-earth satellites are vulnerable and must be protected," he said.

As a former CIA director, Gates said he understands the importance of a strong intelligence-gathering system and the need to analyze that intelligence and plan a U.S. response.

He told Chilton he's confident the general will be able to tackle the challenges ahead and build on the accomplishments Marine Gen. James E. Cartwright began during his three years at STRATCOM. Cartwright served as commander until August, when he became the eighth vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Cartwright "flattened the organization," speeding up information flow throughout the command, Gates said. He also introduced the Global Innovation and Strategy Center, which brings together outside experts to focus on a specific issue, brainstorming solutions and developing recommendations for STRATCOM leaders to follow up on.

Gates said he knew filling Cartwright's shoes at STRATCOM would be challenging, but that he believes Chilton is the person to take the command forward. "General Chilton, we look to you for the way ahead during these turbulent times," he said.

Chilton said he feels honored to lead the organization that is "called on to be the most responsive combatant command in the U.S. arsenal."

He noted STRATCOM's broad responsibilities. "We are responsible today for providing the secretary of defense time-sensitive planning to conduct global strike operations anywhere on the planet. We are tasked to conduct operations in support of the global fight we are engaged in today," he said. "And we are tasked to be the masters and defenders of domains that have become ever more critical, not only to the way we fight as a nation, but to our way of life as a nation ... -- the domains of space and cyberspace."

With the "tsunami change" that ushered in STRATCOM's reorganization and adoption of a 24/7 operational mission beginning to settle, Chilton said, he's ready to increase the command's focus on future threats as well as today's fight.

"The type of combat we will face in the 21st century will go beyond the physical force on force and the battles of centuries gone by," he said. It will require "innovation, ... speed, agility and focus."

He called the men and women serving at STRATCOM "just the team America needs to defend her today and tomorrow."

"I am excited and proud and humbled to join this great team in our noble endeavor," Chilton said.


Posts: 186
From: College Station, TX
Registered: Apr 2003

posted 10-17-2007 10:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevmac   Click Here to Email Kevmac     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Originally posted by Jay Chladek:
Last posting before US Stratcom was Commander of U.S. Space Command at Peterson AFB in Colorado Springs.
Just a minor correction: Gen. Chilton was actually the Commander of Air Force Space Command at Peterson AFB until this new assignment.

U.S. Space Command, established in 1985, merged into USSTRATCOM in 2002 and no longer exists. STRATCOM was started in 1992 when Strategic Air Command (SAC) was closed down.

Robert Pearlman

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-02-2010 05:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
U.S. Strategic Command release
STRATCOM change in leadership announced

OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. -- The Air Force today announced the retirement of Gen Kevin P. Chilton, Commander of United States Strategic Command, headquartered here.

"Over the past 34 years, I've been blessed with so many tremendous opportunities to work alongside the finest men and women in the world. I'm especially proud of the dedicated professionals of United States Strategic Command who deliver Global Security for America every day. Now, it's time to close this chapter of my career and say thanks to all who have supported Cathy and me over the past three decades - what a wonderful experience it's been!"

Also announced was President Barack Obama's nomination to the United States Senate of Gen C. Robert Kehler for appointment to the grade of general and assignment to Commander, USSTRATCOM.

The date of General Chilton's change of command and retirement has yet to be determined.

Jay Chladek

Posts: 2211
From: Bellevue, NE, USA
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 01-30-2011 02:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
American Forces Press Service
Kehler Succeeds Chilton as Strategic Command Chief

Air Force Gen. Kevin P. Chilton passed the flag of U.S. Strategic Command to Air Force Gen. C. Robert Kehler today, giving the nation's nuclear deterrent mission a new commander.

Chilton, a pilot who served 10 years with NASA and flew three space shuttle missions, retired after 34 years of service. Kehler assumed command after serving as the commander of Air Force Space Command at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates presided over the ceremony. Outside the hangar where the ceremony took place were aircraft important in the command. From B-52 and B-2 bombers, to F-15 Eagles, to U-2 reconnaissance planes, the aircraft served as a backdrop to honor Chilton's career from the Air Force Academy class of 1976 to orbit to today.

Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, noted Chilton's "detour" to being a shuttle astronaut.

"Across the services, officers who take a detour around the 'standard career path' like General Chilton did rarely return to their home service, and when they do, they don't always get the chance to succeed," the chairman said. "It is difficult to compare their value relative to their peers, so rather than embracing their diversity of experience as a benefit, we thank them for their service and send them on to the next chapter in their lives.

"But the Air Force thankfully brought 'Chilli' ...back into the fold," he continued, "and the Air Force, Stratcom and our nation are better for it."

Gates thanked Chilton and his family for their years of service and talked of his high expectations for Kehler. He also expressed his thanks to the men and women of U.S. Strategic Command.

"Our nation looks to the men and women of Stratcom to continue to provide the traditional strategic nuclear deterrent, while also taking on new strategic missions that reflect the technologies and threats of the 21st century, most notably in space and cyber," Gates said.

Chilton took over the command when it was facing challenges in control and accountability for America's strategic nuclear mission.

"Chilli has led the way in reforming the management of the nuclear enterprise -- overseeing the creation of the Air Force Global Strike Command, providing more training for our nuclear airmen and restoring the nuclear mission to its proper place of honor," the secretary said. "Chilli was also a tireless, principled and effective advocate for the New START treaty with Russia -- a service for which [President Barack Obama] and I are grateful."

...Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton A. Schwartz presided over Chilton's retirement from the service. He called the general an inspiration and effective leader, who through natural talent, perseverance and a little luck excelled in all aspects of his service.

Chilton thanked the men and women of Strategic Command and the surrounding community. He thanked his mentors through the years and friends from his hometown of Los Angeles, from his Air Force Academy class, the Air Force, NASA and beyond for gathering for his retirement. He thanked Gates and Mullen for their trust and confidence and support. He especially thanked his family for their sacrifices.

Omaha World Herald: Chilton: From Outer Space to Cyberspace
He retires as the only person in U.S. history to be both an astronaut and a four-star general.

Chilton proved that "the mythology" that there's only one way to become a high-ranking military leader "is nonsense," said Gen. Norton Schwartz, chief of staff for the Air Force.

"It was because of passion, it was because of talent, it was because of hard work and a little bit of luck."

Chilton's one-of-a-kind path to military retirement is only one way he can surprise.

General Chilton will officially retire from the USAF on February 1, 2011.

Gen Kehler was one time deputy commander of USSTRATCOM and took over Air Force Space Command when General Chilton came to Offutt AFB. It took quite awhile for this change of command to occur since Chilton's retirement was first announced in September as Gen Kehler's appointment had to be approved by the Senate.

Robert Pearlman

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-30-2012 05:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Orbital Sciences Corporation release
Orbital Names General Kevin Chilton to Company's Board of Directors

Former Commander of U.S. Strategic Command and NASA Astronaut to Provide Strategic Insight Into National Security and Civilian Space Markets

Orbital Sciences Corporation, one of the world's leading space technology companies, today announced that Gen. Kevin P. Chilton (U.S. Air Force – retired) has been appointed to the company's Board of Directors.

"We are very pleased to welcome General Chilton to Orbital's Board of Directors. His broad experience and deep knowledge of the company's fastest growing markets will be of tremendous benefit to the company," said Mr. David W. Thompson, Orbital's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "As Orbital's business continues to expand in U.S. national security space systems and in NASA's human spaceflight activities, we expect that General Chilton's personal background in both markets will provide Orbital with a unique perspective from one of the industry's most respected leaders."

General Chilton served as Commander, U.S. Strategic Command, from 2007 through 2011. His responsibilities entailed overseeing plans and operations for all U.S. forces conducting strategic deterrence as well as the space and cyberspace operations of the Department of Defense. From 2006 to 2007, General Chilton served as Commander of Air Force Space Command, where he was responsible for all Air Force space operations. Prior roles with the Air Force included Commander of the 8th Air Force from 2005 to 2006 and a variety of assignments at the Pentagon from 2000 to 2005. Earlier in his Air Force career, he flew more than 4,000 hours in F-4 and F-15 aircraft after graduating from the Air Force pilot training and test pilot schools.

General Chilton also served as a NASA astronaut from 1987 to 1996, including on three flights as Pilot and Commander of the Space Shuttle Atlantis and Endeavour orbiters and logging more than 700 hours in space.

He graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1976 and earned his master's degree in mechanical engineering from Columbia University in 1977. In addition, General Chilton's numerous awards include the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and the Air Force Commendation Medal. He is also a recipient of NASA's "Top Fox" flight safety award and was recently named as a 2012 inductee into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame.

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