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137th SOW makes history with first female wing commander

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Caitlin Carnes
  • 137th Special Operations Wing

Airmen of the 137th Special Operations Wing gathered to usher in a new era of leadership as Col. Shelby Dreyer assumed command as the first woman wing commander during a change of command ceremony April 5, 2024. 

Outgoing commander Col. Jason Davis passed the guidon to Dreyer, entrusting her with the responsibility of the wing and upholding the “Oklahoma Standard.” 

“I am proud to hand the guidon and the responsibility of these amazing people to you today,” Davis said. “You are absolutely the leader this wing needs.”

Dreyer joined the Air National Guard as a commissioned officer in 2001. Her career includes over 19 years in intelligence, both within the Air and Army National Guard. She has served as a senior intelligence officer, 285th Special Operations Intelligence Squadron commander, 137th SOW chief of staff, 137th Mission Support Group commander and 137th SOW deputy commander.

“Being the first isn’t anything new, especially here at the 137th,” said Dreyer. “Firsts are vital for any type of growth. We are problem solvers and proof-of-concept builders paving the way for others and always answering the call.”

Davis was presented with the Legion of Merit for his outstanding service as a group and wing commander, including overseeing more than 5,000 deployed flying hours during 1,031 combat missions. 

“I cannot articulate how blessed and thankful I am to have served alongside, deployed with and led the amazing men and women of the 137th SOW,” Davis reflected. 

Dreyer’s appointment to wing commander coincides with an overarching shift throughout Air Force Special Operations Command to a faster-paced, collaborative and adaptable fighting force. Under Dreyer’s leadership, the 137th SOW will continue to embody the “Oklahoma Standard” as a force provider organized, trained and equipped to support combatant commanders across the spectrum of conflict projecting airpower anytime, anywhere.

“We are the ‘Oklahoma Standard,’” Dreyer affirmed. “We take the Oklahoma flag everywhere we go.”