General Charles Brown: the first African-American chief of staff of the US Air Force

The US “Stars and Stripes” website reported on August 6, 2020 that General Charles Brown was sworn in as the 22nd Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force on the morning of the 6th, becoming the first African American to lead a service in the 245-year history of the U.S. Armed Forces. Since Colin Powell, the second African-American senior general. According to reports, on June 9, 2020, in Washington, DC, the 58-year-old Air Force General Charles Brown was unanimously approved by 98 votes to 0, and the U.S. Senate approved the first African-American as the Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force.

Get a good education
Charles Brown, born in San Antonio, Texas, USA in 1962, is the second child of Charles and Kay Brown, and the eldest son of the family. Charles Brown Sr. served in the US Army for 30 years. He participated in the Vietnam War and retired with the rank of colonel. In the 1960s and 1970s, when the blacks at the bottom were still active in breaking apartheid and fighting for equality in education, Brown’s family could be said to be “compared to the top and more than the bottom”, and he was relatively comfortable with food and clothing and able to receive a good education. Basic guarantee.

Brown himself admitted that Charles Sr. was the person who had the greatest impact on his military career. No wonder Brown pointed out in a brief speech after taking office as the top commander of the Air Force that if his father, a professional army officer, had not convinced him to dismiss him. With the idea of ​​withdrawing from the Texas Tech University Reserve Officer Training Corps program after just one semester, his chance to become an Air Force leader will never come. Brown said that even after entering the Air Force later, he originally only intended to serve for 4 years.

Mother Kay Brown is his “number one fan” and “loudest supporter.” Sister Stephanie and the late brother Kevin also played an active role in Brown’s growth. In terms of personal life, Brown and his wife Charlene married in 1989 and have two children. The eldest son Sean now lives in Tampa, Florida, and the youngest son Rose lives in Washington, DC.

Rich experience
Since the U.S. Air Force does not have the position of Air Force Commander, the Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force is equivalent to the U.S. Air Force Commander. The Chief of Staff of the US Air Force is the highest-ranking officer of the US Air Force and is one of the members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Therefore, once Brown takes office, he will naturally become the leader of the US Air Force. This does excite many Africans.

1984-1991: “Fighting Falcon” rookie. In 1984, Brown graduated from the Department of Civil Engineering at Texas Tech University with a Bachelor of Science degree. While in school, he joined the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps, so he was transferred to active duty after graduation and was awarded the rank of second lieutenant. Beginning in May 1985, Brown began to receive basic pilot training, and completed solo flight in March 1987 to become an F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter pilot; the following month he obtained the pilot qualification, Brown was sent to the US military group in Korea Shan Air Force Base, the implementation of an 18-month overseas deployment, this is his first association with the Indo-Pacific region. After returning to China in November 1988, Brown began to serve as a squadron flight instructor, a wing electronic warfare officer, and a flight standards appraiser. As a rookie flight instructor, he made rapid progress. The Gunshan Air Force Base of the US Army in Korea, code-named “Wolves 46”, was the starting point of Brown’s career. When Brown took over the Air Force Indo-Pacific Command, it welcomed the news headline “Wolves 46”.

1991-2009: middle-level officer. From April 1991 to October 1994, Brown accepted a systematic advanced weapons course. After completing relevant training from the US Air Force Fighter Weapons School, he began to be responsible for the weapon training and flight standard appraisal of the entire F-16 model. In October 1994, Captain Brown, who was only 32 years old, was photographed by high-level officials and left Nellis Air Force Base in the desert. He was transferred to the U.S. Department of Defense as the 15th Chief of Air Force General Ronald Fogman. adjutant. In the same year, Brown received a master’s degree in aviation science from Ambride Aviation University. It was from this time that Brown’s career began to transform into the direction of staff and command. From August 1996 to September 1997, Brown completed his professional studies as a student of the Air Force Command and Staff College and the National Defense University Armed Forces Staff College. Subsequently, the top U.S. Air Force began to exercise all-round training on his combat staff, training organization, project planning, administrative management and other capabilities. U.S. 8th Fighter Wing Wing Commander, Secretary of the Air Force and Chief of the Air Force Chief of Staff, and other positions. As a middle-level officer, his future is bright.

O’Shaughnessy (left) and Brown (right) at the Air Force Association seminar

Brown in the Middle East

2009 to present: senior generals. In January 2019, marked by Patrick Shanahan’s role as acting secretary of defense, the US military entered a new round of intensive adjustment of senior officers. As the new Secretary of Defense, Secretary of Naval Operations, Commander of the Marine Corps, Chief of Staff of the Army, Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the Joint Council, and Secretary of Space Force Operations were appointed by Congress successively, the Air Force has become the only armed force that has not yet finalized the next chief officer of the service. Power branch. In fact, as early as March 2, 2020, Trump has formally nominated Brown to the Senate and House of Representatives. Insiders in the Department of Defense even bluntly pointed out that although the U.S. Air Force Europe-Africa Command Commander General Geoffrey Harigian has a good resume, Brown will be nominated and appointed as “a secret that everyone in the Pentagon knows.” . On May 7, 2020, Brown said in a congressional hearing that his work experience in the past 11 years convinced him that he is fully capable of serving as the chief of staff of the Air Force: June 2009-April 2011, served as the U.S. Air Force Wing Captain of the 31st Fighter Wing, stationed at Aviano Air Force Base, Italy; May 2011-May 2013, served as Deputy Director of the Operations Bureau of the US Central Command, stationed at McDill Air Force Base, Florida; May 2013 —In February 2014, he served as deputy commander of the United States Central Command Multinational Joint Air Force and deputy commander of the United States Air Force Central Command, stationed in Southwest Asia; March 2014-June 2015, served as the United States Air Force Europe-Africa Command in charge of operations , Director of Strategic Deterrence and Nuclear Weapons Integration, stationed at Ramstein Air Force Base, Germany; June 2015-July 2016, served as Commander of the U.S. Air Force Central Command, stationed in Southwest Asia; July 2016-July 2018 , Served as deputy commander of the US Central Command, stationed at McDill Air Force Base in Florida; Since July 2018, he has served as the Commander of the US Air Force Pacific Command, the Commander of the Multinational Joint Air Force of the US Indo-Pacific Command, and the Executive Director of the Pacific Air Operations Staff. He is stationed at the Pearl Harbor-Hickam Joint Base in Hawaii. When Brown was the commander of the U.S. Air Force Central Command, it was at the height of the U.S. military’s air strikes against Iraq and Syria. He has also deployed as an F-16 fighter pilot in theaters in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and he himself has made many overseas study tours. In Brown’s own words, these seven positions have always revolved around five major challenges: China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, and violent extremism-highly consistent with the national security threats proposed in the new version of the US National Defense Strategy. After making history and becoming the first chief of staff of the African-American military, Brown’s military power will be 7 times as much as when he made the above remarks, and the challenges he will face are even more severe.