John W. Raymond

Summary

John William Raymond (born April 30, 1962)[1] is a retired United States Space Force general who served as the first chief of space operations from 2019 to 2022. The first guardian, he served as commander of the United States Space Command from 2019 to 2020.

John W. Raymond
Gen John W. Raymond (5).jpg
Official portrait, 2022
Nickname(s)Jay
Born (1962-04-30) April 30, 1962 (age 60)
Monterey County, California, U.S.
AllegianceUnited States
Branch
Years of service
1984–2019 (Air Force)
  • 2019–2023 (Space Force)
RankGeneral
Commands held
Battles/wars
Awards
Alma mater
Spouse(s)
Mollie Raymond
(m. 1987)
SignatureJohn W. Raymond signature.svg

Raised in a military family, Raymond was commissioned into the United States Air Force in 1984 after graduating from Clemson University. A career missile and space operations officer, he has commanded the 5th Space Surveillance Squadron, 30th Operations Group, Fourteenth Air Force, Joint Force Space Component Command, and Air Force Space Command. He has been deployed to serve in the War in Afghanistan and the Iraq War.

In 2016, Raymond assumed command of the Air Force Space Command and, in 2019, assumed additional duties as unified combatant command commander following the reestablishment of the U.S. Space Command. When the U.S. Space Force was established, he became the first chief of space operations. He also became the first member of the Space Force, ending his over 35 years of service in the Air Force.

For his work in leading the initial building of the Space Force, Raymond has been described as the "father of the Space Force". As the first chief of space operations, he oversaw the standup of new Space Force organizations, transfer of personnel from other military branches, consolidation of space units from other services, and setting its culture. He relinquished his post as chief of space operations in 2022 and retired from military service in 2023.

Early life and educationEdit

Born in Monterey County, California,[1] and raised in Alexandria, Virginia, John William Raymond is the son of Barbara Ryan and retired United States Army Colonel John Allen Raymond (1935–2016).[2][3] Since 1865, his family has had graduates from United States Military Academy in West Point, New York, including his great great grandfather, great grandfather, grandfather, and father.[4][5] His great great grandfather, Army Brigadier General Charles Walker Raymond, graduated as the top cadet of his class in 1865.[6][7] As an Army captain, civil engineer Charles Raymond commanded a delegation that went to Northern Tasmania to time the transit of Venus in December 1874. His father was a 1958 graduate of West Point, where he once taught astronomy.[8][9]

Raymond graduated from Clemson University in 1984 with a B.S. degree in administrative management before he was commissioned in the United States Air Force.[2] He later earned an M.S. degree from the Central Michigan University in 1990 and an M.A. degree in national security and strategic studies from the Naval War College in 2003. He also attended Squadron Officer School in 1990, Air Command and Staff College in 1997, and the Joint Forces Staff College in 2007. He also completed Air University's Combined Force Air Component Commander Course and Joint Flag Officer Warfighting Course.[10]

Military careerEdit

United States Air ForceEdit

 
Raymond in 2005 as a colonel

Raymond was commissioned in the Air Force in 1984 as a second lieutenant following his graduation from Clemson University. The following year, he was assigned to the 321st Strategic Missile Wing as a missile combat crew commander at Grand Forks Air Force Base. From 1989 to 1993, Raymond was an operations center officer controller with the 1st Strategic Aerospace Division and executive officer of the 30th Space Wing at Vandenberg Air Force Base. In 1993, he was assigned to Air Force Space Command as chief of commercial space lift operations and assistant chief of current operations and, in 1996, as deputy director for commander-in-chief's action group.[10]

In 1997, after attending Air Command and Staff College, Raymond was stationed at the Pentagon first as a space and missile Force programmer at the Air Force headquarters and then as chief of expeditionary aerospace force space and program integration. He remained there until 2000, at which time he assumed command of the 5th Space Surveillance Squadron located at RAF Feltwell in England. The following year, Raymond returned to the United States and became deputy commander of the 21st Operations Group. From 2002 to 2003, he studied at Naval War College. For two years after that, he was assigned as a transformation strategist to the Office of the United States Secretary of Defense. In 2005, he returned to Vandenberg Air Force Base and assumed command of the 30th Operations Group. He held that position until 2007, when he was named Commander of the 21st Space Wing.[10]

In 2009, Raymond was reassigned to Air Force Space Command as director of plans, programs, and analyses. From December 2010 to July 2012, he served as vice commander of the Fifth Air Force and deputy commander of the Thirteenth Air Force at Yokota Air Base, Japan. From July 2012 to January 2014, he served as director of plans and policy of the United States Strategic Command at Offutt Air Force Base.

 
Raymond (right) with Gen Goldfein (left) and Gen Hyten (center) during the 2016 Air Force Space Command change of command

Raymond was promoted to lieutenant general on January 31, 2014, and assumed command of the Fourteenth Air Force and the Joint Functional Component Command for Space at Vandenberg.[11] He replaced Lieutenant General Susan Helms who was retiring after her failed nomination as Air Force Space Command vice commander.[12] He relinquished command to Lieutenant General David J. Buck on August 14, 2015, to return to the Pentagon and serve as the deputy chief of staff for operations of the U.S. Air Force.[13]

Raymond was nominated for promotion to the rank of general and to the command of Air Force Space Command on September 8, 2016.[14] This nomination was confirmed by the United States Senate on September 15.[15] He assumed command of the Air Force Space Command on October 27, 2016, replacing John E. Hyten who was then tapped to become the commander of United States Strategic Command.[16] On December 1, 2017, the Joint Functional Component Command for Space was restructured as the Joint Force Space Component Command and Raymond was dual-hatted as commander of the newly reorganized unit under U.S. Strategic Command.[17]

United States Space CommandEdit

 
Raymond speaks at the White House ceremony establishing of the U.S. Space Command, August 29, 2019

By 2018, plans were made to reestablish the United States Space Command and Raymond was tasked to plan for its standup.[18][19] He asked five planners to help him plan such standup, including U.S. Army Brigadier General Thomas L. James and U.S. Air Force Brigadier General Shawn Bratton, and then-Brigadier General David N. Miller to lead a task force that did the detailed planning.[20] On March 22, 2019, he was nominated to lead that unified combatant command, and was then confirmed by the United States Senate on June 27.[21][22] He assumed command of the newly reestablished U.S. Space Command on August 29, 2019, while retaining command of Air Force Space Command.[23]

Raymond is a proponent for declassifying space capabilities and intelligence as a way for deterring adversaries opening more dialogue about space threats.[24][25] Along with Admiral Philip S. Davidson and seven other combatant commanders, he signed a memo—called informally as the "36-star memo"—addressed to the United States Intelligence Community that called for declassifying space-related intelligence.[26]

In February 2020, Raymond called out Russia for "threatening behavior" in outer space, threatening a U.S. national security satellite. This was the first time the U.S. military has publicly identified a direct threat to a specific American satellite by an adversary.[27][28]

While being the chief of the new military service, he continued serving as commander of the U.S. Space Command until August 20, 2020, when he relinquished command to his deputy, General James H. Dickinson.[29] The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020, which also created the Space Force, included a provision which allowed the chief of space operations to concurrently serve as commander of the combatant command for one year.[30]

United States Space ForceEdit

 
Raymond shaking President Donald Trump's hand after being named as the first chief of space operations, December 20, 2019.

When the creation of the Space Force or space corps was debated, Raymond initially did not support the idea of creating a separate space corps. In 2017, he wrote in a Defense One article that while he applauded the increased focus on space as a warfighting domain, what is needed instead is deeper integration and more resources.[31] By April 2019, he reversed his position, supporting the Trump administration's proposal to establish the Space Force under the Department of the Air Force.[32]

 
Raymond being sworn in as the first chief of space operations by Vice President Mike Pence, January 14, 2020

On December 20, 2019, the U.S. Space Force was established by redesignating the Air Force Space Command as a separate service. Raymond, then commander of Air Force Space Command, was appointed as the first chief of space operations. According to President Donald Trump, "With today's signing I will proudly appoint Gen. Jay Raymond the first chief of space operations and he will become the very first member of the Space Force and he will be on the Joint Chiefs."[33] By becoming the first member of the Space Force, he left the Air Force after over 35 years of military service. He was officially sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence on January 14, 2020.[34]

In November 2020, Raymond released the Chief of Space Operations' Planning Guidance where he outlined his five priorities as the service chief of the Space Force: building a lean and agile service, developing joint warfighters, delivering new capabilities, expand international cooperation, and creating a digital service. He also ordered the creation of the Space Warfighting Analysis Center and National Space Intelligence Center.[35][36]

The law that created the Space Force stated that the chief of space operations will become a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff only a year after its enactment, but Raymond was allowed to join the Joint Chiefs immediately because then-Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley viewed it important to national security.[37] In December 2020, Raymond became an official member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, his office becoming the 8th member of the Joint Chiefs.[38] Together with other members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Raymond denounced the 2021 United States Capitol attack.[39]

Raymond, and almost all the other Joint Chiefs of Staff members, went into quarantine in October 2020 after coming into contact with Admiral Charles Ray, who tested positive for COVID-19.[40]

 
Raymond (center) transferred responsibility to Saltzman (right) in 2022 in the Space Force's first change of responsibility ceremony.

Raymond pushes for international norms of behavior for the space domain. Without those norms of behavior, he likened space as the "Wild, Wild West."[41] This "rules of the road" for space is what he wants to pass on to his successors.[42] In November 2021, he wrote an opinion piece for the Washington Post, detailing what the Space Force is doing to establish international norms and standards of behavior in space.[43]

On November 2, 2022, Raymond transferred responsibility as chief of space operations to B. Chance Saltzman.[44][45] During the ceremony, Secretary Frank Kendall III called Raymond the "father of the Space Force".[46][47] He will retire from active duty on January 1, 2023, after 38 years of service.[48]

Personal lifeEdit

Raymond is married to Mollie Raymond from Saint Paul, Minnesota, whom he met during his first assignment at Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota and while she was studying at the University of North Dakota. They got married in June 1987 after Mollie graduated from college.[49] They have three children.[50]

Awards and decorationsEdit

 
French Air Force Brigadier General Jean-Pascal Breton pins on the Ordre national du Mérite to Raymond, 2018

Raymond is the recipient of the following awards:[10]

  Command Space Operations Badge
 
Command Missile Operations Badge
 
Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Identification Badge
 
Space Staff Badge
 
 
Defense Distinguished Service Medal with one bronze oak leaf cluster
 
 
Air Force Distinguished Service Medal with one bronze oak leaf cluster
 
 
Defense Superior Service Medal with one bronze oak leaf cluster
 
 
Legion of Merit with one bronze oak leaf cluster
 
 
 
 
 
Meritorious Service Medal with four bronze oak leaf clusters
  Air Force Commendation Medal
  Joint Meritorious Unit Award
 
 
 
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with two bronze oak leaf clusters
 
 
 
Air Force Organizational Excellence Award with two bronze oak leaf clusters
  Combat Readiness Medal
 
 
Air Force Recognition Ribbon with one bronze oak leaf cluster
 
 
National Defense Service Medal with one bronze service star
  Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
  Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
  Humanitarian Service Medal
  Air Force Overseas Long Tour Service Ribbon
  Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with gold frame
 
 
 
 
 
Air Force Longevity Service Award with one silver and three bronze oak leaf clusters
  Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon
  Air Force Training Ribbon
  National Order of Merit (France), Officer[51]

Dates of promotionEdit

 
Raymond kneels as his wife, Mollie (left), and his mother, Barbara (right), pin on his third star during his promotion ceremony, January 31, 2014
Rank Date[10]
  Second lieutenant July 20, 1984
  First lieutenant July 20, 1986
  Captain July 20, 1988
  Major July 1, 1996
  Lieutenant colonel July 1, 1999
  Colonel July 1, 2004
  Brigadier general August 19, 2009
  Major general May 4, 2012
  Lieutenant general January 31, 2014
  General October 25, 2016

WritingsEdit

Op-edsEdit

  • With Frank Kendall III (June 8, 2022). "The U.S. Space Force Is Your Eye in the Sky". The Wall Street Journal.
  • "How the U.S. Space Force is trying to bring order to increasingly messy outer space". The Washington Post. November 29, 2021.
  • "How We're Building a 21st-Century Space Force". The Atlantic. December 20, 2020.
  • With David L. Goldfein and Barbara Barrett (July 21, 2020). "US Air Force, Space Force: Here Is Your New Arctic Strategy". Defense One.
  • "We Need to Focus on Space; We Don't Need a 'Space Corps'". Defense One. July 12, 2017. Retrieved August 12, 2021.

Journal articlesEdit

  • With Kurt M. Neuman (February 2011). "Preserving the Space Domain for Future Generations" (PDF). High Frontier: The Journal for Space & Missile Professionals. 7 (2): 20–23.
  • With Troy Endicott (February 2008). "People Who Impact Warfare with Space Capabilities" (PDF). High Frontier: The Journal for Space & Missile Professionals. 4 (2): 23–28.
  • "Transforming Space Capabilities" (PDF). High Frontier: The Journal for Space & Missile Professionals. 1 (4): 42–45. 2005.
  • With Arthur K. Cebrowski (Summer 2005). "Operationally Responsive Space: A New Defense Business Model" (PDF). United States Army War College Quarterly. 35 (2): 66–77.

ThesisEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "John W Raymond". California Birth Index, 1905–1995. Sacramento, California: State of California Department of Health Services, Center for Health Statistics.
  2. ^ a b "Clemson Commencement Program". Clemson University. May 1984. Retrieved March 26, 2019.
  3. ^ "John Raymond". The Washington Post. December 6, 2016. Retrieved November 4, 2022.
  4. ^ Carl, Melissa (Fall 2012). "West Point's Legacy Families" (PDF). West Point Association of Graduates.
  5. ^ "Assembly – United States Military Academy. Association of Graduates – Google Books". 2009. Retrieved December 23, 2019.
  6. ^ Ernst, Oswald H. "Gen. Charles Walker Raymond". Professional Memoirs, Corps of Engineers, United States Army, and Engineer Department at Large. 6 (26): 232–235.
  7. ^ "Raymond, Charles Walker". Army Cemeteries Explorer. U.S. Army. Retrieved November 4, 2022.
  8. ^ "United States Military Academy West Point - Howitzer Yearbook (West Point, NY), Class of 1958, Page 477 of 604". E-Yearbook.com.
  9. ^ Belio, Cynthia (November 1, 2022). "Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. "Jay" Raymond's exit interview". Defense Visual Information Distribution Service.  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  10. ^ a b c d e "General John W. "Jay" Raymond". United States Space Force. April 2022. Retrieved October 25, 2016.  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  11. ^ Writer, Staff (February 6, 2014). "JFCC Space, 14th Air Force welcome new commander".
  12. ^ "Helms To Retire After Nomination to be AFSPC Vice Commander Withdrawn".
  13. ^ "14th AF, JFCC Space welcome new commander". Schriever Space Force Base (Archived).
  14. ^ "General Officer Announcements". U.S. Department of Defense. September 8, 2016. Retrieved September 17, 2016.
  15. ^ "PN1673 — Lieutenant General John W. Raymond — Air Force". U.S. Congress. September 15, 2016. Retrieved September 17, 2016.
  16. ^ Keeler, Khloe (October 27, 2016). "New Air Force Space Command sworn in at Colorado Springs military base". KKTV.
  17. ^ "AFSPC commander becomes JFSCC, joint space forces restructure". Air Force Space Command (Archived).
  18. ^ "POLITICO Pro Q&A: Chief of Space Operations Gen. Jay Raymond". POLITICO.
  19. ^ Miller, Zeke; Baldor, Lolita (December 17, 2018). "Trump plans to create unified US Space Command". Military Times.
  20. ^ "Transcript: U.S. Space Command Change of Command Ceremony" (PDF). United States Space Command. August 20, 2020.
  21. ^ Erwin, Sandra (March 26, 2019). "Trump nominates Raymond to be commander of U.S. Space Command". SpaceNews. Retrieved March 26, 2019.
  22. ^ Yoanna, Michael de (June 17, 2019). "Colorado U.S. Space Command Nominee Seeks To 'Deter A Conflict'". kunc.org. Retrieved July 8, 2019.
  23. ^ "Department of Defense Establishes U.S. Space Command". U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE.
  24. ^ Strout, Nathan (March 3, 2021). "Space Force chief says he's working on a declassification strategy, but offers scant details". C4ISRNet.
  25. ^ Erwin, Sandra (December 10, 2019). "U.S. Space Command chief Raymond: 'I'm really excited for the Space Force'". SpaceNews.
  26. ^ "Spy chiefs look to declassify intel after rare plea from 4-star commanders". POLITICO.
  27. ^ "Exclusive: Russian Craft Shadowing U.S. Spy Satellite, Space Force Commander Says". Time.
  28. ^ Erwin, Sandra (February 10, 2020). "Raymond calls out Russia for 'threatening behavior' in outer space". SpaceNews.
  29. ^ "New Bosses at SPACECOM, NORTHCOM". August 20, 2020.
  30. ^ "NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2020" (PDF). United States Congress. December 20, 2019.  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  31. ^ Raymond, John W. (July 12, 2017). "We Need to Focus on Space; We Don't Need a 'Space Corps'". Defense One. Retrieved June 3, 2021.
  32. ^ Erwin, Sandra (April 4, 2019). "Raymond endorses Trump's Space Force proposal". SpaceNews.
  33. ^ Browne, Ryan (December 20, 2019). "With a signature, Trump brings Space Force into being". Cable News Network. Retrieved December 20, 2019.
  34. ^ "Raymond sworn in as first Chief of Space Operations at White House event".
  35. ^ Strout, Nathan (November 9, 2020). "US Space Force chief lays out his priorities in new guidance". Defense News.
  36. ^ John W., Raymond (November 9, 2020). "Chief of Space Operations' Planning Guidance" (PDF). United States Space Force.  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  37. ^ Erwin, Sandra (January 17, 2020). "U.S. Space Force begins to organize Pentagon staff and field operations". SpaceNews.
  38. ^ "Space Force Leader to Become 8th Member of Joint Chiefs". U.S. Department of Defense.
  39. ^ Harkins, Gina (January 12, 2021). "In Unprecedented Joint Letter, Top Military Brass Denounces US Capitol Riot". Military.com.
  40. ^ "Seven of military's Chiefs of Staff quarantine after admiral positive". NBC News.
  41. ^ "Space Force general wants rules for space". Stars and Stripes.
  42. ^ "Transcript: The Path Forward: Space Force with Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. "Jay" Raymond". The Washington Post. August 30, 2021.
  43. ^ Raymond, John W. "Jay" (November 29, 2021). "How the U.S. Space Force is trying to bring order to increasingly messy outer space". The Washington Post.
  44. ^ Erwin, Sandra (October 30, 2022). "For U.S. Space Force, Raymond's retirement marks the end of an era". SpaceNews.
  45. ^ Erwin, Sandra (July 28, 2022). "Saltzman tapped to succeed Raymond as chief of the U.S. Space Force". SpaceNews.
  46. ^ Smith, Marcia (November 2, 2022). "SALTZMAN TAKES OVER AS U.S. SPACE FORCE COMMANDER". SpacePolicyOnline.com.
  47. ^ Valerie, Insinna (November 2, 2022). "'Father of the Space Force' Raymond retires, as Saltzman takes command". Breaking Defense.
  48. ^ Dietrich, Eric (November 2, 2022). "CSO change of responsibility [Image 10 of 13]". DVIDS. Retrieved November 5, 2022.
  49. ^ Jowers, Karen (May 9, 2021). "Space Force's first senior spouse works to build a 'family-like culture'". Military Times.
  50. ^ Gross, Natalie (May 13, 2020). "Meet the First Lady of Space Force: An interview with Mollie Raymond". Air Force Times.
  51. ^ "Twitter". Mobile.twitter.com. April 16, 2018. Retrieved December 23, 2019.

External linksEdit

Military offices
Preceded by
Jay G. Santee
Commander of the 21st Space Wing
2007–2009
Succeeded by
Preceded by Director of Plans, Programs, and Analyses of the Air Force Space Command
2009–2010
Succeeded by
Preceded by Vice Commander of the Fifth Air Force and Deputy Commander of the Thirteenth Air Force
2010–2012
Succeeded by
Preceded by Director of Plans and Policy of the United States Strategic Command
2012–2014
Succeeded by
Preceded by Commander of the Fourteenth Air Force and the Joint Functional Component Command for Space
2014–2015
Succeeded by
Preceded by Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations of the United States Air Force
2015–2016
Succeeded by
Preceded byas Commander of the Joint Functional Component Command for Space Commander of the Joint Force Space Component Command
2017–2019
Command inactivated
Preceded by Commander of the Air Force Space Command
2016–2019
Command redesignated
New office Commander of the United States Space Command
2019–2020
Succeeded by
New office Chief of Space Operations
2019–2022
Succeeded by