F-16 Pilot Tapped To Chair Joint Chiefs


A 3,000-hour career Air Force pilot has been tapped to be the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Gen. Charles Quinton Brown Jr., the current head of the Air Force, will assume the post next fall when the current chairman, Army Gen. Mark Milley, will leave the post, assuming he’s confirmed by the Senate. Brown has flown 20 aircraft types and flew 130 hours in combat. Most of his postings have been on the F-16. But despite his right stuff resumé, it’s Brown’s geopolitical specialty that likely tilted the nomination in his favor.

Brown was commander of the Air Force in the Pacific and was naturally preoccupied with getting air power realigned to face the increasingly belligerent tone coming out of Beijing. “General Brown is a warrior,” said President Joe Biden in his nomination announcement. “He knows what it means to be in the thick of battle—and how to keep your cool when things get hard.”  

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.

Other AVwebflash Articles


  1. Finally, an appointee who at least on paper actually looks qualified for the position. I wish the general good luck on his possible new position.

  2. Maybe we should be chasing Gen. Milley for the position of FAA Administrator. He may not be a pilot, but he definitely is a “no BS” kind of leader who delivers on his promises.

    • That has always been an issue with FAA administrators of the past. Most who come directly from the military have no idea how GA works and GA usually gets the short stick in the end.

  3. Too bad he was nominated by the president; most other nominees to this administration have proven to be overly political in their decisions.

  4. C’mon, Jay. You know the rules or you should. No name calling and let’s stick to the topic. I’m deleting the whole thread because it has nothing to do with the story.

    1. September 1997 – November 1999, Air Operations Officer, Current Operations Division, Operations Directorate, U.S. Central Command, MacDill AFB, Fla., as a major
    2. May 2011 – March 2013, Deputy Director, Operations Directorate, U.S. Central Command, MacDill AFB, Fla., as a brigadier general
    3. July 2016 – July 2018, Deputy Commander, U.S. Central Command, MacDill AFB, Fla., as a lieutenant general

    Rating: command pilot
    Flight hours: more than 3,000 including 130 combat hours
    Aircraft flown: F-16A/B/C/D and 20 additional fixed and rotary-wing aircraft

    Defense Distinguished Service Medal with one oak leaf cluster
    Distinguished Service Medal
    Defense Superior Service Medal
    Legion of Merit with three oak leaf clusters
    Bronze Star Medal
    Defense Meritorious Service Medal
    Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
    Aerial Achievement Medal
    Joint Service Commendation Medal
    Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
    Combat Readiness Medal
    National Defense Service Medal with bronze star
    Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
    Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
    Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
    Korea Defense Service Medal
    Nuclear Deterrence Operations Service Medal
    NATO Medal
    Republic of Korea Order of National Security Merit (Tongil Medal)
    Republic of Singapore Pingat Jasa Gemilang (Tentera) Meritorious Service Medal
    Republic of Korea Order of National Security Merit (Samil Medal)

    “Developing Doctrine for the Future Joint Force: Creating Synergy and Minimizing Seams,” Air University Press, September 2005 “No Longer the Outlier: Updating the Air Component Structure” Air University Press, Spring 2016