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CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT JAMES E. FITCH II

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Chief Master Sgt. James “Bill” Fitch is the Command Chief, Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. As the Senior Enlisted Leader, he is the principle advisor to the commander on the training, readiness and welfare of 6,500 Airmen and Guardians. He assists the commander in execution of a $3 billion Air Force science and technology program and a $3 billion external research and development program. He helps manage a government workforce that spans across the globe through the laboratory’s nine component technology directorates, the 711th Human Performance Wing and AFWERX.

Chief Fitch entered the Air Force in November 1995. His background includes duties as an Evaluator/Instructor Boom Operator with over 3600 hours in KC-135R/T  aircraft. His assignments include bases in North Dakota, Texas, England, Hawaii, Washington, Maryland and New Jersey. He has numerous deployments supporting Operations SOUTHERN/NORTHERN WATCH, DESERT FOX, ALLIED FORCE, ENDURING/IRAQI FREEDOM, JOINT GUARDIAN and INHERENT RESOLVE. Prior to assuming his current position, he served as the Command Chief, 9th Air Expeditionary Task Force - Levant, Camp Arifjan, Kuwait.

EDUCATION   
1998 KC-135R Central Flight Instructor Course, Altus AFB, Okla.   
1999 USAF Airman Leadership School, Grand Forks AFB, N.D.   
2002   CCAF Associates in Aviation Operations   
2005   USAF NCO Academy, Lackland AFB, Texas   
2005   CCAF Instructor in Technology & Military Sciences   
2005   CCAF Occupational Instructor Certification   
2009   USAF Senior NCO Academy, Gunter Annex, Ala.   
2013   Senior Enlisted Joint PME Course, National Defense University, Washington, D.C.   
2013   Chief Leadership Course, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii    
2016   Command Chief Master Sergeant Training Course, Randolph AFB, Texas   
2016   Senior Enlisted Legal Orientation Course, Maxwell AFB, Ala.   
2016   Center for Creative Leadership, Leadership Development Program, Colorado Springs, Colo.   
2016   Continuous Process Improvement for Executives, Institute for Defense & Business, Alexandria, Va.  2018 Enterprise Leadership Seminar, Kenan-Flagler Business  School, Chapel Hill, N.C.  
2019 Senior Enlisted Joint PME II, National Defense University, Washington D.C.  
2020 Keystone Command Senior Enlisted Leader Course, National Defense University, Washington, D.C.

ASSIGNMENTS 
1.    1995 - 1995, Trainee, Basic Military Training, Lackland AFB, Texas
2.    1996 - 1996, Student, Enlisted Aircrew Undergraduate Course (EAUC), Sheppard AFB, Texas
3.    1996 - 1996, Basic Boom Operator Course, Initial Qualification, Altus AFB, Okla.
4.    1996 - 2002, Mission, Instructor, Evaluator Boom Operator, 911th ARS, Grand Forks AFB, N.D.
5.    2002 - 2006, EAUC, Center of Excellence Instructor, 344th TRS, Lackland AFB, Texa
6.    2006 - 2010, First Sergeant, Operations Superintendent, 351st ARS, RAF Mildenhall, UK
7.    2010 - 2010, Superintendent, Standardization & Evaluation, 100th OG, RAF Mildenhall, UK
8.    2010 - 2013, Squadron Superintendent, 92d ARS, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
9.    2011 - 2012, Group Superintendent/First Sergeant, 376th AEG, Transit Center at Manas, Kyrgyzstan
10.  2013 - 2014, Squadron Superintendent, 96th ARS, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
11.  2013 - 2014, Group Superintendent, 15th Operations Group, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
12.  2014 - 2016, Group Superintendent, 92d Operations Group, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
13.  2016 - 2018, Command Chief, 89th Airlift Wing, Joint Base Andrews, Md.
14.  2018 - 2020, Command Chief, 87th Air Base Wing, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J.
15.  2020 - 2021, Command Chief, 9th Air Expeditionary Task Force - Levant, Camp Arifjan, Kuwait
16.  2021 - Present, Command Chief, Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio

MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS   
Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters 
Meritorious Service Medal with one silver leaf cluster   
Air Medal with one oak leaf cluster   
Aerial Achievement Medal with four oak leaf clusters   
Air Force Commendation Medal   
Air Force Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster  
Joint Meritorious Unit Award   
Meritorious Unit Award with one oak leaf cluster   
AF Outstanding Unit Award with Valor Device and two silver leaf clusters Combat Readiness Medal with two oak leaf clusters   
National Defense Service Medal with one bronze star   
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with two bronze stars  
Kosovo Campaign Medal with one bronze star   
Afghanistan Campaign Medal with one bronze star   
Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal 
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary & Service Medal   
Humanitarian Service Medal   
Nuclear Deterrence Operations Medal with three oak leaf clusters   
NATO Medal for Kosovo

OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS   
1999 USAF Airman Leadership School, Leadership Award 1999  
319th Operations Group, Boom Operator of the Year   
2001 911th Air Refueling Squadron, Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year
2004 344th Training Squadron, Instructor of the Year   
2005 USAF NCO Academy, Distinguished Graduate   
2005 344th Training Squadron, Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year   
2008 351st Air Refueling Squadron, Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year 2009 100th Operations Group, Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year   2011 92d Air Refueling Squadron, Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year   2012 92d Operations Group, Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year   2013 96th Air Refueling Squadron, Senior Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year   

EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION   
Airman First Class – 16 December 1995 
Senior Airman – 16 October 1997   
Staff Sergeant – 1 July 2000   
Technical Sergeant – 1 July 2004   
Master Sergeant – 1 July 2007   
Senior Master Sergeant – 1 Mar 2011   
Chief Master Sergeant – 1 Sep 2014   

(Current as of Aug 2021)