Chief Master Sgt. Christopher M. Gradel

Chief Master Sergeant Christopher M. Gradel is the Command Chief Master Sergeant, 1st Fighter Wing, Joint Base Langley-Eustis AFB, Virginia. The wing is comprised of over 1,700 personnel, two airfields, two groups, and six squadrons; including two F-22 fighter squadrons and a T-38 fighter training squadron supporting Air Combat Command. Chief Gradel is the senior enlisted advisor to the commander on all aspects of employment, readiness, training, resilience and professional development of the enlisted force. The 1st Fighter Wing executes worldwide rapid deployment and employment of F-22 air dominance fighters in support of Combatant Commander taskings.

Chief Gradel entered the Air Force in October 1998 and completed basic training at Lackland AFB, TX.  Prior to assuming his current position, he served as 325th Mission Support Group Superintendent. Chief Gradel has leadership experience in both joint and total force environments as well as traditional Air Force assignments in the communications and logistics career fields.  He served as a First Sergeant for three years. Prior assignments include bases located in Arizona, Texas, South Carolina, and Hawaii. The chief has also been assigned overseas in South Korea, and deployed numerous times in support of Operations SOUTHERN WATCH, IRAQI FREEDOM and ENDURING FREEDOM.

EDUCATION
2003 Airman Leadership School, Randolph AFB, TX
2008 Associate of Applied Science Logistics, Community College of the Air Force
2008 Associate of Applied Science Electronic Systems Tech, Community College of the Air Force
2008 U.S. Air Force Noncommissioned Officer Academy, Hickam AFB, HI
2008 Senior Enlisted Joint Professional Military Education Correspondence Course I, National Defense University
2009 Bachelor of Science Degree in Information Technology Management, TUI University (Summa Cum Laude)
2010 U.S. Air Force First Sergeant Academy, Maxwell AFB, AL
2011 U.S. Air Force Senior Noncommissioned Officer Academy, Gunter Annex, AL
2011 Professional Manager Certification in Leadership, Community College of the Air Force
2011 Associate of Applied Science Human Resource Management, Community College of the Air Force
2015 Asia-Pacific Orientation Course, Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies, Fort DeRussy, HI
2016 Master of Business Administration w/Strategic Leadership Concentration, Trident University (Summa Cum Laude)
2016 Senior Enlisted Joint Professional Military Education Correspondence Course II, National Defense University
2020  Senior Enlisted Legal Orientation Course, Judge Advocate General’s School, Maxwell AFB, AL
2021 Enterprise Leadership Seminar, Kenan-Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina, NC
 
 
ASSIGNMENTS
  1. October 1998 – November 1998, Trainee, Basic Military Training, Lackland AFB, TX
  2. November 1998 – June 1999, Student, Supply Technician Course, Lackland AFB, TX
  3. June 1999 – February 2002, Express Customer Service Technician, 355th Supply Squadron, Davis-Monthan AFB,  AZ, (September 2000 – December 2000, Supply Technician, 363rd Expeditionary Supply Squadron, Prince Sultan AB, Saudi Arabia)
  4. February 2002 – July 2002, Student, Communications/Computer System Control, Keesler AFB, MS
  5. July 2002 – March 2004, Emergency Response Team Technician, 12th Communications Squadron, Randolph AFB, TX, (February 2003 –May 2003, Third Country National Escort, 485th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron, King Faisal AB, Saudi Arabia)
  6. March 2004 – August 2006, Wide Area Network Supervisor, 609th Air Communications Squadron, Shaw AFB, SC, (January 2005 – May 2005, Systems Controller, Combined Air Operations Center, Al Udeid AB, Qatar)
  7. August 2006 – August 2007, Noncommissioned Officer in Charge Tech Control Facility, 8th  Communications Squadron, Kunsan AB, ROK
  8. August 2007 – October 2010, Infrastructure Section Chief, 747th Communications Squadron, Hickam AFB, HI (May 2009 – November 2009, Joint Network Control Center Senior Watch Officer, Combined Forces Special Operations Component Command, Al Udeid AB, Qatar)
  9. October 2010 – October 2013, First Sergeant, 323rd Training Squadron, 737th Training Support Squadron, 344th Training Squadron, 37th Training Support Squadron, Lackland AFB, TX
  10. October 2013 – April 2015, Operations Superintendent, 502d Communications Squadron, Joint Base San Antonio, TX
  11. April 2015 – July 2018, Senior Enlisted Leader, Defense Information Systems Agency Pacific, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, HI
  12. July 2018 – May 2019, Chief Enlisted Manager Communications and Cyber Directorate, A6 Cyber and Communications Directorate, 1st Air Force (Air Forces Northern), Tyndall AFB, FL
  13. May 2019 – May 2020, Superintendent, 325th Mission Support Group, Tyndall AFB, FL
  14. May 2020 – Present, Command Chief Master Sergeant, 1st Fighter Wing, Joint Base Langley-Eustis, VA
 
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with three bronze oak leaf clusters Joint Service Commendation Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal with two bronze oak leaf clusters
Army Commendation Medal
Air Force Achievement Medal with three bronze oak leaf clusters
Meritorious Unit Award
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor Device and three bronze oak leaf clusters
Korean Defense Service Medal
 
OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS
2006  8th Communications Squadron NCO of the Year 2008  15th Communications Squadron NCO of the Year
2009  Pacific Air Force’s Air Force Sergeants Association NCO of the Year
2009  15th Airlift Wing SNCO of the Year
2009  Team Hickam SNCO of the Year
2010  747th Communications Squadron Lance P. Sijan Award Recipient
2011  323rd Training Squadron Lance P. Sijan Award Recipient
2011  2d Air Force First Sergeant of the Year
2011  Joint Base San Antonio First Sergeant of the Year
2011  37th Training Wing Air Force Association Joe Kellogg First Sergeant of the Year
2013  Joint Base-Lackland Air Force Sergeants Association Member of the Year
2013  Division 4 U.S. South East Region Air Force Sergeants Association Member of the Year
2014  502d Air Base Wing Air Force Outstanding Cyberspace Systems SNCO of the Year
 
EFFECTIVE DATE OF PROMOTION
Chief Master Sergeant 1 December 2015
 
(Current as of March 2021)
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