Lt. Gen. Tony D. Bauernfeind is the Commander, Air Force Special Operations Command, Hurlburt Field, Florida. The command is the Air Force component of U.S. Special Operations Command. AFSOC provides Air Force special operations forces for worldwide deployment and assignment to unified combatant commanders. The command has approximately 20,800 active-duty, Reserve, Air National Guard and civilian professionals.
Lt. Gen. Bauernfeind earned his commission from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1991. Earning his wings in 1992, he has flown more than 3,500 hours in the MC-130E, MC-130H and MQ-9 aircraft. He has commanded special operations forces at the squadron, group, wing and theater special operations command levels.
Prior to his current assignment, Lt. Gen. Bauernfeind served as the Vice Commander, Headquarters U.S. Special Operations Command, Washington D.C.
1991 Distinguished Graduate, Bachelor of Science, Chemistry, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.
1992 Distinguished Graduate, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Columbus Air Force Base, Miss.
1997 Distinguished Graduate, Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2000 Master of Business Administration, Auburn University, Ala.
2004 Distinguished Graduate, Master of Military Operational Art and Science, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2005 Master of Airpower Art and Science, School of Advanced Air and Space Studies, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2006 Air War College, by correspondence
2009 Military Fellow, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, Calif.
2010 Joint Forces Staff College, Norfolk, Va.
2010 Center for Creative Leadership, Greensboro, N.C.
2013 Combined Forces Special Operation Component Commander Course, MacDill AFB, Fla.
2020 Joint Flag Officer Warfighting Course, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1. July 1991–August 1992, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Columbus Air Force Base, Miss.
2. September 1992–July 1993, MC-130E Initial Mission Qualification, Little Rock AFB, Ark. and Hurlburt Field, Fla.
3. July 1993–January 1997, MC-130E Aircraft Commander and MC-130H Instructor Pilot, 1st Special Operations Squadron, Kadena Air Base, Japan
4. January 1997–January 1998, MC-130H Instructor Pilot, 550th Special Operations Squadron, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
5. January–August 1998, Student F-15 Pilot, 2nd Fighter Squadron, Tyndall AFB, Fla.
6. August 1998–September 2001, MC-130H Instructor Pilot, Standards/Evaluations Pilot and Assistant Director of Operations, 15th Special Operations Squadron and Wing Executive Officer, 16th Special Operations Wing, Hurlburt Field, Fla.
7. September 2001–June 2003, Chief, Special Operations Forces/Combat Search and Rescue Branch, Global Mobility/Special Operations Capability Requirements Division, Deputy Chief of Staff for Air and Space Operations, Headquarters Air Force, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va.
8. July 2003–July 2004, Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
9. July 2004–June 2005, Student, School of Advanced Air and Space Studies, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
10. June–October 2005, Chief Special Warfare Division, Headquarters Air Force Doctrine Center, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
11. November 2005–January 2006, MC-130H Requalification Training, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
12. January 2006–May 2008, Operations Officer, then Commander, 15th Special Operations Squadron, Hurlburt Field, Fla.
13. June 2008–June 2009, Military Fellow, RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, Calif.
14. June 2009–June 2011, Director of Staff and Special Assistant to the Director, Defense Advanced Research Projects, Arlington, Va.
15. June 2011–June 2013, Commander, 1st Special Operations Group, Hurlburt Field, Fla.
16. July 2013–February 2015, Commander, 27th Special Operations Wing, Cannon AFB, N.M.
17. May 2015–April 2016, Deputy Commanding General-Operations, NATO Special Operations Component Command/Special Operations Joint Task Force-Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan
18. April 2016–June 2019, Commanding General, Special Operations Command Korea, South Korea
19. July 2019–July 2020, Chief of Staff, United States Special Operations Command, MacDill AFB, Fla.
20. August 2020–December 2022, Vice Commander, United States Special Operations Command, Washington, D.C.
21. December 2022 – present, Commander, Headquarters AFSOC, Hurlburt Field, Fla
SUMMARY OF JOINT ASSIGNMENTS
1. August–December 2006, Commander, Combined Joint Special Operations Air Detachment, Afghanistan as a lieutenant colonel
2. May–September 2007, Deputy Commander, Combined Joint Special Operations Air Component, Iraq/Afghanistan, as a lieutenant colonel
3. June 2009–June 2011, Director of Staff and Special Assistant to the Director, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Arlington, Va., as a colonel
4. May 2012–January 2013, Commander, Combined Joint Special Operations Air Component, Afghanistan, as a colonel
5. May 2015–April 2016, Deputy Commanding General-Operations, NATO Special Operations Component Command/Special Operations Joint Task Force, Kabul, Afghanistan, as a brigadier general
6. April 2016–June 2019, Commanding General, Special Operations Command Korea, South Korea, as a brigadier general and major general
7. July 2019–July 2020, Chief of Staff, United States Special Operations Command, MacDill AFB, Fla., as a major general
8. August 2020–December 2022, Vice Commander, United States Special Operations Command, Washington, D.C., as a lieutenant general
Rating: command pilot
Flight Hours: more than 3,500
Aircraft Flown: MC-130H, MC-130E, MC-130J, C-130E, AC-130H/U, CV-22, U-28, C-146, PC-12, UH-1N and MQ-9
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Defense Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster
Bronze Star Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with oak leaf cluster
Aerial Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 29, 1991
First Lieutenant May 29, 1993
Captain May 29, 1995
Major March 1, 2002
Lieutenant Colonel March 1, 2006
Colonel Oct. 1, 2009
Brigadier General Aug. 2, 2015
Major General Aug. 1, 2018
Lieutenant General July 31, 2020
(Current as of December 2022)