W. Thomas West



Preferred Name: 
Thomas

Nickname/Call Sign: Tiny

Date of Birth: May 14, 1943

Highest Military Grade Held: Major General

Hometown: Headland, AL

Biography

Major General W. Thomas West was commander of the 19th Air Force, Air Education and Training Command, headquartered at Randolph Air Force Base, TX. He was responsible for the training continuum for more than 2,000 U.S. and allied students each day, from entry into the flight screening program through graduation from combat crew training as fully qualified aircrews for the warfighting commands. He assessed graduate readiness to support world-wide contingencies and mobilization plans for Air Education and Training Command units. The 19th Air Force is composed of more than 25,000 assigned personnel and 1,600 aircraft in 18 units throughout the United States.

A native of Headland, Ala., he entered the Air Force in July 1966 as a distinguished graduate of the Florida State University Reserve Officer Training Corps program. His flight experience includes tours as an F-100 pilot; A-7 pilot and fighter weapons instructor; F-4 flight commander and squadron operations officer; and F-16 squadron and wing commander. A command pilot with more than 3,500 flying hours, the general logged 343 combat hours over Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. He has commanded three fighter wings and has served tours on the Air Staff and at the unified command . Major General West retired from the USAF in May of 1997.

(source https://web.archive.org/web/20040210220322/http://www.af.mil/bios/bio.asp?bioID=7556) leve

Units Assigned

  • 8/1966-7/1967 UPT, Craig Air Force Base, AL
  • 8/1967-6/1968 Air Force Operational Training Course, Cannon AFB, NM (F-100)
  • 6/1968-7/1969 510th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Bien Hoa AB, Vietnam (F-100)
  • 7/1969-3/1971 77th Tactical Fighter Squadron, pilot, forward air controller, maintenance officer, RAFS Wethersfield/RAFS Upper Heyford, England (F-100)
  • 3/1971-4/1973 356th Tactical Fighter Squadron, pilot and standardization and evaluation flight examiner,  Myrtle Beach AFB, SC (A-7D)
  • 4/1973-8/1973 Air Force Fighter Weapons School, Nellis AFB, NV (A-7D)
  • 8/1973-8/975 65th Fighter Weapons Squadron, A-7D fighter weapons instructor pilot, Nellis AFB, NV (A-7D)
  • 8/1975-8/1976  Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL
  • 8/1976-11/1976 F-4E conversion training, Homestead AFB, FL (F-4E)
  • 11/1976-1/1980 3rd Tactical Fighter Squadron, flight commander, chief of standardization, operations officer, Clark AB, Philippines (F-4E)
  • 1/1980-2/1981 414th Fighter Weapons Squadron, , operations officer, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 2/1981-2/1983 430th Tactical Fighter Squadron, , commander, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 3/1983-7/1983 474th Tactical Fighter Wing, special assistant to the commander, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 7/1983-8/1984 Headquarters U.S. Air Force, chief, tactics and training branch, tactical forces division, directorate of operations, plans and operations deputate,  Washington, DC
  • 8/1984-8/1985 Headquarters U.S. Air Force, executive officer to the director of operations,Washington, DC
  • 8/1985-6/1986 National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, DC
  • 6/1986-8/1987 388th Tactical Fighter Wing, vice commander,  Hill AFB, UT
  • 8/1987-4/1988 58th Tactical Fighter Wing, commander,  Luke AFB, AZ
  • 4/19-5/1990 31st Tactical Fighter Wing, commander,  Homestead AFB, FL
  • 5/1990-11/1991 57th Fighter Weapons Wing, commander,  Nellis AFB, NV
  • 11/1991-10/1993 U.S. Pacific Command, deputy director for operations, commander in chief, Camp H.M. Smith, HI
  • 11/1993-11/1995 Headquarters U.S. Air Force, special assistant for theater air defense, Washington, DC
  • 11/1995 -5/1997  19th Air Force, commander, Headquarters Air Education and Training Command, Randolph AFB, TX
  • 5/1997 Retired USAF

Awards & Decorations

Defense Superior Service Medal
File:Legion of Merit ribbon.jpg Legion of Merit
Distinguished Flying Cross
Meritorious Service Medal (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters)
Air Medal (with 2 Silver Oak Leaf Clusters/4 Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters)
Air Force Commendation Medal
Presidential Unit Citation
Vietnam Service Medal (with 4 Bronze Service Stars)
Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm
Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

Flight Info

F-10
A-7
F-4
F-16
T-38

Rating: Command pilot
Flight hours: More than 3,500

Military Education

  • 1972 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, AL
  • 1976 Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL
  • 1986 National War College, Washington, DC

Civilian Education

  • 1965 BS/Business Administration, Florida State University
  • 1976 MA/Psychology, Troy State University, AL
Biography

Biography

Major General W. Thomas West was commander of the 19th Air Force, Air Education and Training Command, headquartered at Randolph Air Force Base, TX. He was responsible for the training continuum for more than 2,000 U.S. and allied students each day, from entry into the flight screening program through graduation from combat crew training as fully qualified aircrews for the warfighting commands. He assessed graduate readiness to support world-wide contingencies and mobilization plans for Air Education and Training Command units. The 19th Air Force is composed of more than 25,000 assigned personnel and 1,600 aircraft in 18 units throughout the United States.

A native of Headland, Ala., he entered the Air Force in July 1966 as a distinguished graduate of the Florida State University Reserve Officer Training Corps program. His flight experience includes tours as an F-100 pilot; A-7 pilot and fighter weapons instructor; F-4 flight commander and squadron operations officer; and F-16 squadron and wing commander. A command pilot with more than 3,500 flying hours, the general logged 343 combat hours over Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. He has commanded three fighter wings and has served tours on the Air Staff and at the unified command . Major General West retired from the USAF in May of 1997.

(source https://web.archive.org/web/20040210220322/http://www.af.mil/bios/bio.asp?bioID=7556) leve

Units - Education - Awards - Flight Info

Units Assigned

  • 8/1966-7/1967 UPT, Craig Air Force Base, AL
  • 8/1967-6/1968 Air Force Operational Training Course, Cannon AFB, NM (F-100)
  • 6/1968-7/1969 510th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Bien Hoa AB, Vietnam (F-100)
  • 7/1969-3/1971 77th Tactical Fighter Squadron, pilot, forward air controller, maintenance officer, RAFS Wethersfield/RAFS Upper Heyford, England (F-100)
  • 3/1971-4/1973 356th Tactical Fighter Squadron, pilot and standardization and evaluation flight examiner,  Myrtle Beach AFB, SC (A-7D)
  • 4/1973-8/1973 Air Force Fighter Weapons School, Nellis AFB, NV (A-7D)
  • 8/1973-8/975 65th Fighter Weapons Squadron, A-7D fighter weapons instructor pilot, Nellis AFB, NV (A-7D)
  • 8/1975-8/1976  Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL
  • 8/1976-11/1976 F-4E conversion training, Homestead AFB, FL (F-4E)
  • 11/1976-1/1980 3rd Tactical Fighter Squadron, flight commander, chief of standardization, operations officer, Clark AB, Philippines (F-4E)
  • 1/1980-2/1981 414th Fighter Weapons Squadron, , operations officer, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 2/1981-2/1983 430th Tactical Fighter Squadron, , commander, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 3/1983-7/1983 474th Tactical Fighter Wing, special assistant to the commander, Nellis AFB, NV
  • 7/1983-8/1984 Headquarters U.S. Air Force, chief, tactics and training branch, tactical forces division, directorate of operations, plans and operations deputate,  Washington, DC
  • 8/1984-8/1985 Headquarters U.S. Air Force, executive officer to the director of operations,Washington, DC
  • 8/1985-6/1986 National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, DC
  • 6/1986-8/1987 388th Tactical Fighter Wing, vice commander,  Hill AFB, UT
  • 8/1987-4/1988 58th Tactical Fighter Wing, commander,  Luke AFB, AZ
  • 4/19-5/1990 31st Tactical Fighter Wing, commander,  Homestead AFB, FL
  • 5/1990-11/1991 57th Fighter Weapons Wing, commander,  Nellis AFB, NV
  • 11/1991-10/1993 U.S. Pacific Command, deputy director for operations, commander in chief, Camp H.M. Smith, HI
  • 11/1993-11/1995 Headquarters U.S. Air Force, special assistant for theater air defense, Washington, DC
  • 11/1995 -5/1997  19th Air Force, commander, Headquarters Air Education and Training Command, Randolph AFB, TX
  • 5/1997 Retired USAF

Awards & Decorations

Defense Superior Service Medal
File:Legion of Merit ribbon.jpg Legion of Merit
Distinguished Flying Cross
Meritorious Service Medal (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters)
Air Medal (with 2 Silver Oak Leaf Clusters/4 Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters)
Air Force Commendation Medal
Presidential Unit Citation
Vietnam Service Medal (with 4 Bronze Service Stars)
Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm
Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

Flight Info

F-10
A-7
F-4
F-16
T-38

Rating: Command pilot
Flight hours: More than 3,500

Military Education

  • 1972 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, AL
  • 1976 Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL
  • 1986 National War College, Washington, DC

Civilian Education

  • 1965 BS/Business Administration, Florida State University
  • 1976 MA/Psychology, Troy State University, AL
Photos