Lance L. Smith

Lance L. Smith
Lance L Smith.jpg
General Lance L. Smith
Born (1946-09-18) September 18, 1946 (age 74)
Akron, Ohio, U.S.
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchUnited States Air Force
Years of service1970-2008
Commands heldU.S. Joint Forces Command
NATO Supreme Allied Command for Transformation
7th Air Force
Air Force Doctrine Center
4th Fighter Wing
27th Fighter Wing
Battles/warsVietnam War
AwardsDefense Distinguished Service Medal (3)
Air Force Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Star (3)
Legion of Merit (2)
Distinguished Flying Cross (3)
Purple Heart
Air Medal (10)

Lance L. Smith (born September 18, 1946)[1] is a retired United States Air Force general who last served as the Commander, U.S. Joint Forces Command, Norfolk, Virginia, and NATO Supreme Allied Commander for Transformation from November 10, 2005, to November 9, 2007. A highly decorated combat veteran, the general retired from active duty on January 1, 2008.

Smith entered the United States Air Force in 1970 after graduating from Virginia Tech and completing Officer Training School. He served two tours at The Pentagon and was Commandant of the NATO School at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe, Commandant of Air War College, and Vice Commander of Air University. He commanded two fighter wings and led two air expeditionary force deployments to Southwest Asia: AEF III and the 4th Air Expeditionary Wing. He flew more than 165 combat missions in Southeast and Southwest Asia in the A-1 Skyraider and the F-15E Strike Eagle. A command pilot, he has more than 3,000 hours in various military aircraft.



  • June 1970 - June 1971, student, undergraduate pilot training, Columbus AFB, Mississippi
  • June 1971 - September 1971, A-1 combat crew training, Hurlburt Field, Florida
  • October 1971 - October 1972, A-1 pilot, 1st Special Operations Squadron, Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai AFB, Thailand
  • October 1972 - July 1973, instructor pilot training, Randolph AFB, Texas
  • July 1973 - September 1977, instructor pilot and chief, check section, 96th Flying Training Squadron, Williams AFB, Arizona
  • September 1977 - January 1979, staff officer, Air Staff Training Program, Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
  • January 1979 - August 1981, student, A-7 Corsair conversion training, A-7D aircraft commander, flight commander and assistant operations officer, 76th Tactical Fighter Squadron, England AFB, Louisiana
  • August 1981 - June 1982, student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Alabama
  • June 1982 - July 1986, Air Staff officer, Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Operations; Project Checkmate analyst for interdiction, Europe and Southwest Asia; Air Force team chief, Joint Assessment and Initiative Office, and executive officer to the Air Force Director of Operations, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
  • July 1986 - July 1989, Chief of Safety, later, Assistant Deputy Commander for Operations, 354th Tactical Fighter Wing, Myrtle Beach AFB, South Carolina
  • July 1989 - June 1990, student, Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania
  • June 1990 - August 1992, Commandant, NATO School, SHAPE, Oberammergau, Germany
  • August 1992 - September 1993, Vice Commander, later, Commander, 27th Fighter Wing, Cannon AFB, New Mexico
  • September 1993 - June 1995, Assistant Director of Operations, Headquarters Air Combat Command, Langley AFB, Virginia
  • June 1995 - July 1997, Commander, 4th Fighter Wing, Seymour Johnson AFB, North Carolina
  • July 1997 - August 1998, Vice Commander, 7th Air Force and U.S. Air Forces Korea, and Chief of Staff, Combined Republic of Korea and U.S. Air Component Command, Osan Air Base, South Korea
  • September 1998 - December 1999, Commandant, Air War College, and Vice Commander, Air University, Maxwell AFB, Alabama
  • December 1999 - November 2001, Commander, Air Force Doctrine Center, Maxwell AFB, Alabama
  • November 2001 - October 2003, Deputy Commander, United Nations Command; Deputy Commander, U.S. Forces Korea; Commander, Air Component Command, Republic of Korea and U.S. Combined Forces Command; and Commander, 7th Air Force, Pacific Air Forces, Osan AB, South Korea
  • October 2003 - November 2005, Deputy Commander, U.S. Central Command, MacDill AFB, Florida
  • November 2005 - November 2007, Commander, U.S. Joint Forces Command, and NATO Supreme Allied Commander for Transformation, Norfolk, Virginia

Flight information

Major awards and decorations

COMMAND PILOT WINGS.png Air Force Command Pilot Badge
USJFCOM SEAL.gif United States Joint Forces Command Badge
Allied Command Transformation Badge
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Defense Distinguished Service Medal with two bronze oak leaf clusters
Air Force Distinguished Service Medal
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Silver Star with two oak leaf clusters
Defense Superior Service Medal
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Width-44 crimson ribbon with a pair of width-2 white stripes on the edges
Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster
"V" device, brass.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Distinguished Flying Cross with two bronze oak leaf clusters and Valor V
Width-44 purple ribbon with width-4 white stripes on the borders Purple Heart
Width-44 crimson ribbon with two width-8 white stripes at distance 4 from the edges.Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Silver oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Air Medal (10 awards in total)
Air Medal
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Aerial Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Commendation Medal
Width-44 myrtle green ribbon with width-3 white stripes at the edges and five width-1 stripes down the center; the central white stripes are width-2 apart Army Commendation Medal
Air Force Presidential Unit Citation
Joint Meritorious Unit Award
"V" device, brass.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with two oak leaf clusters and Valor V
Air Force Organizational Excellence Award
Combat Readiness Medal
Width=44 scarlet ribbon with a central width-4 golden yellow stripe, flanked by pairs of width-1 scarlet, white, Old Glory blue, and white stripesBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg National Defense Service Medal with two bronze service stars
Bronze star
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with service star
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg Vietnam Service Medal with three service stars
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal ribbon.svg Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Korea Defense Service Medal
Armed Forces Service Medal
Humanitarian Service Medal
Air and Space Campaign Medal
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Air Force Overseas Short Tour Service Ribbon with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Overseas Long Tour Service Ribbon
Silver oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg Air Force Longevity Service Award with one silver and three bronze oak leaf clusters
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon
Air Force Training Ribbon
GER Bundeswehr Honour Cross Silver ribbon.svg Bundeswehr Cross of Honor in Silver (Republic of Germany)
Gugseon Security Medal Ribbon.png Order of National Security Merit (Korea), Gugseon Medal
Cheon-Su Security Medal Ribbon.png Order of National Security Merit (Korea), Cheon-Su Medal
MSC ribbon-military.png Meritorious Service Cross, Military Division (Canada)
SVK Commemorative Medal Min-of-Def 1st BAR.svg Commemorative Medal of the Slovak Defense Ministry of the First Degree (Slovak Republic)
Vietnam gallantry cross unit award-3d.svg Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation
NATO Meritorious Service Medal bar.svg NATO Meritorious Service Medal
Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal ribbon, with 60- clasp.svg Vietnam Campaign Medal

Effective dates of promotion

  • Second Lieutenant May 18, 1970
  • First Lieutenant November 11, 1971
  • Captain October 18, 1973
  • Major December 4, 1978
  • Lieutenant Colonel February 1, 1982
  • Colonel July 1, 1989
  • Brigadier General July 1, 1995
  • Major General April 1, 1998
  • Lieutenant General January 1, 2002
  • General November 7, 2005


  1. ^ [1]

External links

 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Government document: "http://www.af.mil/bios/bio.asp?bioID=7181".

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