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Chief of Staff

Major General Karsten Stoye

Major General Karsten Stoye assumed his position as Chief of Staff at NATO’s Headquarters Allied Air Command at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, on 1 March 2019 after his previous assignment as Deputy Chief of Staff Operations at NATO’s Headquarters Allied Air Command.

After studying economics and administrative science at the University of the German Federal Armed Forces in Hamburg, General Stoye has served in various operational and staff positions.

As a senior operations officer and command pilot in the Tactical Reconnaissance Wing 51 ‘Immelmann’, he contributed from 1995 to 1996 to the United Nations and NATO missions during the conflict in the Former Yugoslavia. In 1998 he graduated from the Command and General Staff Officer Course at the Federal Armed Forces Command and Staff College in Hamburg.

Until 2000, General Stoye served as a Branch Chief at the NATO Combined Air Operations Centre 4 (CAOC 4) in Messstetten, Germany, where he was responsible for training and exercises. In 1999 he contributed to the NATO Operation in Kosovo as Chief Air Task Order Planner at the Balkan CAOC in Vicenza.

From 2000 to the end of 2003, he was Commander of the Flying Group of Fighter Bomber Wing 31 “Boelcke” in Nörvenich.

The following year, he was assigned to the German Ministry of Defence as Assistant Branch Chief at the Air Staff, responsible for concepts and requirements for Air Force Operations.

After a follow-on assignment at the Air Force Command from 2005 to 2006, he served at the Ministry of Defence as Military Assistant to the Parliamentary State Secretary.

At the end of 2007, he assumed command of the Tactical Reconnaissance Wing 51 “Immelmann” in Schleswig, Northern Germany until 2010. During this time he was appointed as Base Commander at the Operation Wing Mazar-e-Sharif in Afghanistan for operations under NATO International Security Assistance Force from 2008 to 2009. As Base Commander and command pilot, he was responsible for all flying operations of the Reconnaissance Tornados, the Transall C-160 transport aircraft and the CH-53 helicopters as well as for the entire force protection and combat support operations.

Next, General Stoye went through two assignments at the Ministry of Defence, first as Branch Chief responsible for Concepts and Requirements for Air Force Operations (in 2011), and subsequently as Branch Chief, Department of Defence Plans & Policy (in 2012), where he was responsible for the capability management of information, surveillance and reconnaissance affairs of the DEU Armed Forces.

From 2013 until 2015 he was the Deputy Commander at NATO’s Deployable Air Command and Control Centre in Poggio Renatico, Italy.

General Stoye had been the Commander of the NATO E-3A Component in Geilenkirchen, Germany, from 2015 until 2018, where he led an international military and civilian staff, representing 16 NATO nations which provide an airborne early warning, command and control and battle management capability in support of NATO commanders.

General Stoye has flown more than 3,000 flying hours primarily on the TORNADO weapon system, including more than 70 operational missions.


Major Awards and Decorations

Gold Cross of Honour of the Bundeswehr

Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal UNPF

Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal IFOR

Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal SFOR

Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal ISAF

NATO Medal for the former Yugoslavia

NATO Non-Article 5 Medal for ISAF

NATO Meritorious Service Medal

Knight of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy

Spinoza Medal of the German War Graves Commission


Effective dates of Promotion

Second Lieutenant 1986

First Lieutenant 1989

Captain 1992

Major 1996

Lieutenant Colonel 2000

Colonel 2008

Brigadier General 2013

Major General 2019


(Biography current as of July 2019)



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