Lt. Gen. Michelle Johnson became the superintendent of the Air Force Academy, replacing Lt. Gen. Michael Gould during a ceremony at the school’s campus in Colorado Springs, Colo. She is the first woman to lead the academy. Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh presided over the Aug. 12 ceremony. “I am honored, grateful, and very happy to be the 19th superintendent of the US Air Force Academy,” said Johnson at the ceremony. “I also know we’ll inevitably face challenges. . . . It won’t be easy, but we can find meaning in adversity, and there are lessons from overcoming negative experiences and to grow stronger through them,” she said. Johnson is a 1981 distinguished graduate of the academy and was the academy’s first female cadet wing commander. Prior to her new position, she was deputy chief of staff of operations and intelligence at NATO’s Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe in Casteau, Belgium. Gould, who was superintendent for more than four years, is retiring from the Air Force, effective on Oct. 1, after 37 years in uniform. (Colorado Springs report by 1st Lt. Brandon Baccam)
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.