Key Player in Air Force Nuclear Revitalization Retires

Maj. Gen. Donald Alston, 20th Air Force commander, will hand off his command in a ceremony at F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo., on June 22 and will retire from the Air Force, effective Sept. 1, after more than 34 years of service. A 1978 graduate of the Air Force Academy, Alston has overseen the nation’s ICBM forces since July 2010. He played a pivotal role in the revitalization of the Air Force’s nuclear enterprise by serving as the head of the Air Staff’s then-new office of strategic deterrence and nuclear integration from November 2008 to June 2010. In that capacity, he drove the headquarters-level policy changes that helped restore standards of excellence across nuclear units. “Our ongoing efforts to improve experience levels in certain areas will take time,” said Alston of the future of the ICBM forces. “But as those efforts move along, we are continuing to improve the quality of our training across the force, and that work improves the daily preparation that goes into accomplishing each day’s workload.” (Warren report by 1st Lt. Stacey Fenton)