WPAFB 4-star general announces retirement

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WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio (WDTN) –  A four-star general who leads one of the largest commands at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base has announced her retirement.

The Dayton Business Journal reports Gen. Ellen Pawlikowski, commander of the Air Force Materiel Command, is leaving her position in September. Her successor has yet to be named, according to a statement from the Air Force.

Pawlikowski, the third female Air Force general officer to reach a four-star rank, has served as AFMC’s commander since June 2015. She was commissioned as a second lieutenant 40 years ago following graduation from the New Jersey Institute of Technology with a degree in chemical engineering. 

She has served in a number of technical management, leadership and staff positions, including program director of the Airborne Laser Program and commander of the Air Force Research Laboratory. More recently, she led Air Force space systems acquisition as commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center in Los Angeles and served at the Pentagon as military deputy for the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition.

Pawlikowski’s work has earned her numerous awards, including the Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Achievement Medal and more.

As commander of the AFMC, Pawlikowski oversees 80,000 military and civilian employees and helps manage a $60 billion annual budget. With tens of thousands of employees and a multi-billion dollar budget, the AFMC is one of the Air Force’s most populous and well-funded commands.

A native of Bloomfield, N.J., Pawlikowski is planning a move to central Georgia following her retirement.

Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee Mike Turner (R OH-10) released a statement about the announcement:

“Gen. Pawlikowski’s era of leadership greatly grew Wright-Patterson Air Force Base’s contributions to the Air Force’s missions and our national security. Her service at Materiel Command has been inspirational for all who have worked under and with her, and her exemplary performance in her role has increased the importance of that Command. Her historic service as a female four star general in the Air Force has paved the way for strong future female leadership in our armed services. I congratulate her on her well earned retirement and what will be a lasting legacy of outstanding leadership.”

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