57th Wing welcomes new commander

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt Richard Caesar
  • 57th Wing Public Affairs

Air Command Combat Command’s busiest wing is under new leadership as Brig. Gen. Richard Goodman took over command of the 57th Wing from Big. Gen. Michael Drowley in a June 30 change of command ceremony. 

Drowley served as commander from June 2020 and guided the wing through the onset and height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Under his leadership, the 57th Wing executed the advanced warfighter training that Nellis is known for, while navigating strict Covid-era protocols to protect the health and safety of participating members and partners. Drowley’s tenure saw the 57th Wing posture to better train and prepare Airmen to face new pacing challenges, culminating in the activation the 65th Aggressor Squadron June 9, the Air Force’s first dedicated fifth-gen aggressor force.

In his final speech as commander, Drowley spoke directly to Airmen of the 57th Wing, highlighting their accomplishments while under his command.

“What you have done getting after the pacing challenge … you’ve defined the north star for the Air Force,” Drowley said. “You set the vector we need to be on, and I think the amazing thing about it is that under [Goodman’s] leadership, we are going to get to exactly where we need to be, to be ready for that pacing challenge.”   

Drowley will be heading to U.S. Indo-Pacific Command for his next assignment where he will lead the Training and Exercises Directorate supporting the use and integration of multiple component and sub-unified commands including U.S. Forces Korea, US Forces Japan, U.S. Special Operations Command Pacific, U.S. Pacific Fleet, U.S. Marine Forces Pacific, U.S. Pacific Air Forces and U.S. Army Pacific.

He is being succeeded by Goodman who, as a former USAF Thunderbird and USAF Weapons School instructor pilot, is no stranger to Nellis and the 57th Wing. He used his first address to frame the seriousness of the pacing challenge and to encourage the wing to meet it head on.

“Make no mistake about it, across the security environment, the stakes are huge for our country, for our Air Force and for the joint force. Whether across the vast expanses of the Pacific Ocean or across the fields of Europe, no matter where our nation sends us, the threats and problem sets will be as challenging as they’ve ever been,” Goodman warned. “But the good news is the 57th Wing has the right Airmen and the right leaders on task, laser-focused on training our Air Force, the joint force, our allies and partners for the next fight, the high-end fight.”

Goodman, an F-16 and F-15E pilot with more than 800 combat flight hours, has flown sorties in Operations Southern Watch, Northern Watch, Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom, Inherent Resolve and Deliberate Resolve. He is also a graduate of the U.S. Army’s School of Advanced Military Studies at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

Goodman arrives from Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam, Hawaii, where he served as the senior executive officer to the Pacific Air Forces commander. He will now be responsible for 36 squadrons, spanning 12 installations across the country, constituting the Air Force's most diverse flying wing.