RAMSTEIN, Germany – U.S. Air Force General Tod D. Wolters assumed command of NATO's Allied Air Command, U.S. Air Forces in Europe (USAFE) and U.S. Air Forces Africa (AFAFRICA) during a ceremony at Ramstein Air Force Base, on Thursday, August 11, 2016.
Wolters assumed command from U.S. Air Force General Frank Gorenc, who relinquishes command to retire after 37 years service.
In a ceremony attended by many senior military and civilian personnel, Supreme Allied Commander Europe, General Curtis M. Scaparrotti, conducted the handover of command after first officiating the award of the NATO Meritorious Service Medal to Gorenc, for distinguished service while assigned on NATO duties.
"Events over my tenure have reaffirmed my belief that change is the only constant but I know that Air Power will continue to be indispensable to any Joint, Coalition or Alliance operation," said Gorenc. "Head on with resolve second to none, give to General Wolters what you gave to me; give him your hard work, give him your loyalty and most importantly give him your trust," he continued.
Looking out over more than 700 service members and allied partners, General Wolters addressed the crowd for the first time as Allied Air Command, USAFE and AFAFRICA Commander "To the warriors of USAFE, NATO and AFARICA, our next best first step is to add to the incredible momentum that has been achieved by you in the areas of trust and teamwork with our coalition partners. We have that trust, we have that teamwork, we have that integration. I look forward to serving at your side" said Wolters.
Commander of Allied Air Command is one of the three component commanders subordinate to Allied Command Operations in Mons, Belgium. AIRCOM is responsible for all Air and Space matters from northern Norway to southern Italy and from the Azores to eastern Turkey. All missions support NATO's strategic concepts of Collective Defence, Crisis Management and Cooperative Security.
Story by HQ AIRCOM