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8th Air Force and J-GSOC welcomes new commander

8th Air Force Change of Command

U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr. renders his first salute as the 8th Air Force and Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC) commander at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018. As commander of 8th AF, Dawkins will be responsible for America’s premier bomber force, overseeing bomber task force missions and mission planning elements conducted by the J-GSOC. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tessa B. Corrick)

8th Air Force Change of Command

Airmen stand at parade rest during the 8th Air Force and Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC) change of command at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018. More than 300 Airmen, senior leaders, civilian personnel and local and state civic leaders attended the event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Lillian D. Miller)

8th Air Force Change of Command

U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr. assumes command of 8th Air Force and the Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC) from Maj. Gen. Thomas Bussiere during a change of command ceremony at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018. Dawkins’ last position was the deputy director for Nuclear, Homeland Defense and Current Operations on the Joint Staff at the Pentagon. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Luke Hill)

8th Air Force Change of Command

U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr. assumes command of 8th Air Force and the Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC) from Maj. Gen. Thomas Bussiere during a change of command ceremony at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018. Dawkins’ last position was the deputy director for Nuclear, Homeland Defense and Current Operations on the Joint Staff at the Pentagon. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Luke Hill)

8th Air Force Change of Command

U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr. assumes command of 8th Air Force and the Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC) from Maj. Gen. Thomas Bussiere during a change of command ceremony at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018. Dawkins’ last position was the deputy director for Nuclear, Homeland Defense and Current Operations on the Joint Staff at the Pentagon. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Philip Bryant)

8th Air Force Change of Command

U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr., 8th Air Force and Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC) commander, speaks to bomber Airmen during a change of command ceremony at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018. As commander of the historic “Mighty Eighth”, Dawkins is responsible for the care and well-being of the Air Force’s bomber Airmen and B-1, B-2 and B-52 fleets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tessa B. Corrick)

8th Air Force Change of Command

Airmen and Shreveport-Bossier City, La., community members applaud during the 8th Air Force and Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC) change of command ceremony at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018. U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr. assumed command of “The Mighty Eighth” and J-GSOC from Maj. Gen. Thomas Bussiere. Eighth Air Force’s roots date back to WWII, but the historic unit has called the Shreveport-Bossier City area home since 1975. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tessa B. Corrick)

BARKSDALE AIR FORCE, La. --

Eighth Air Force received its 54th commander following a change of command ceremony at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Aug. 20, 2018.

 

U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. James Dawkins Jr. assumed command from Maj. Gen. Thomas Bussiere, who diligently served 8th Air Force for the past two years. Bussiere will now bring his experience as 8th Air Force’s commander to Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson, Alaska, where he will serve as the commander for the 11th Air Force, Alaskan NORAD Region, and Alaskan Command.

 

Dawkins comes from the Pentagon, where he served as the deputy director for Nuclear, Homeland Defense and Current Operations. He was responsible for advising the Secretary of Defense, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Joint Staff Director of Operations regarding nuclear, reconnaissance, space, homeland and missile defense operations. He has also held a variety of positions to include 5th Bomb Wing commander, 509th Operations Group commander and director for Strategic Capabilities Policy at the National Security Council.

 

Dawkins now brings that high-level experience here to 8th Air Force and the Joint-Global Strike Operations Center (J-GSOC).

 

As commander of 8th Air Force, Dawkins will be responsible for America’s premier B-1, B-2 and B-52 bomber force, overseeing bomber task force missions and mission planning elements conducted by J-GSOC as well as making sure Airmen and their families are well cared for.

 

“It is an honor to be a part of ‘The Mighty Eighth,’ said Dawkins. It’s an awesome responsibility and a mission that is crucial to the defense of our nation and its allies. I will do all that is within my power to continue accomplishing this critical mission and to ensure the welfare of our Airmen and their families.”

 

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