United States Air Force Warfare Center


The United States Air Force Warfare Center (USAFWC) at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, reports directly to Air Combat Command. The center was founded on September 1, 1966, as the U.S. Air Force Tactical Fighter Weapons Center. It was renamed the U.S. Air Force Warfare Center in 2005.[1]

United States Air Force Warfare Center
USAF - Warfare Center.png
Emblem of the United States Air Force Warfare Center
CountryUnited States
BranchUnited States Air Force
RoleWarfare Training
Part ofAir Combat Command
Garrison/HQNellis AFB, Nevada
CommanderMaj Gen Case Cunningham
Vice CommanderBrig Gen George M. Reynolds
Command Chief Master SergeantCMSgt Emilio Hernandez
A flight of Aggressor F-15 Eagles and F-16 Fighting Falcons fly in formation over the Nevada Test and Training Range
The first F-22A assigned to the USAFWC
USAF Thunderbirds, part of the United States Air Force Warfare Center
An HH-60G Pave Hawk retrieves a pararescueman as an A-10 Thunderbolt II provides cover fire during a firepower demonstration on the Nellis bombing range.


The USAF Warfare Center manages advanced pilot training and integrates many of the Air Force's test and evaluation requirements. It was established in 1966 as the USAF Tactical Fighter Weapons Center which concentrated on the development of forces and weapons systems that were specifically geared to tactical air operations in conventional (non-nuclear) war and contingencies. It continued to perform this mission for nearly thirty years, undergoing several name changes in the 1990s. In 1991, the center became the USAF Fighter Weapons Center, and then the USAF Weapons and Tactics Center in 1992.[1]

The USAF Warfare Center uses the lands and airspace of the Nevada Test and Training Range (NTTR) – which occupies about three million acres (12,000 km2) of land, the largest such range in the United States, and another five-million-acre (20,000 km2) military operating area which is shared with civilian aircraft. The center also uses Eglin AFB, FL, range, which adds even greater depth to the center's capabilities, providing over water and additional electronic expertise to the center.[1]

The USAF Warfare Center oversees operations of the 57th Wing, the NTTR, and the 99th Air Base Wings at Nellis AFB, Nevada; the 53rd Wing at Eglin AFB, Florida (with Geographically Separated Units at Tyndall AFB, Florida and Holloman AFB, New Mexico); and the 505th Command and Control Wing at Hurlburt Field, Florida.[1]


The 53d Wing serves as the focal point for the combat air forces in electronic combat, armament and avionics, chemical defense, reconnaissance, command and control, and aircrew training devices.
The 57th Wing is responsible for a variety of activities, such as Red Flag, which provides realistic training in a combined air, ground and electronic threat environment for U.S. and allied forces. It is also the parent unit for both the USAF Weapons School (USAFWS) and the USAF Air Demonstration Squadron, the latter better known as the United States Air Force Thunderbirds.
Previously known as the 98th Range Wing (98 RANW), the military organization known as NTTR provides command and control of the actual Nevada Test and Training Range facility located north and northwest of Nellis AFB. The 25th Space Range Squadron (SRS) operates and maintains the Space Test and Training Range and is a subordinate unit the NTTR.
The 99th Air Base Wing is the host wing at Nellis AFB and manages the day-to-day operations of the base.
The 505th CCW is dedicated to improving warfighter readiness through integrated training, tactics, and testing for operational-level command and control of air, space, and cyber power. It hosts the Air Force's only Air Operations Center Formal Training Unit (FTU).[1]


By the mid-1960s, USAF aircraft and aircrew losses in the Vietnam War had convinced Tactical Air Command (TAC) of the need to improve technical and operational skills for the widening conflict. TAC established the Tactical Fighter Weapons Center at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada in 1966 for the expressed purpose of improving fighter operations and tactics. Nellis AFB had been referred to as the "Home of the Fighter Pilot" since the Korean War period of the early 1950s, and had a long history of conducting postgraduate fighter training and operational testing and evaluation of fighter weapons systems. Additionally, the Nellis Range, largest in the free world, readily complemented the new center's mission.


  • Established as the USAF Tactical Fighter Weapons Center in 1966
Redesignated: USAF Fighter Weapons Center in 1991
Redesignated: USAF Weapons and Tactics Center in 1992
Redesignated: USAF Warfare Center in 2005.


Units assignedEdit

Operational units assigned to the USAFWC have been:[2]


  • 4545th Fighter Warfare Wing, 1966 – 22 August 1969
  • 57th Fighter Weapons Wing, 22 August 1969 – 1 April 1977
Redesignated: 57th Tactical Training Wing, 1 April 1977 – 1 March 1980
Redesignated: 57th Fighter Wing, 1 October 1991 – 15 June 1993
Redesignated: 57th Wing, June 15, 1993 – present


  • 57th Fighter 1 November 1991 – present
  • 57th Test: 1 November 1991 – 1 October 1996
  • 4440th Tactical Fighter Training (Red Flag)
Attached 1 October 1979 – 28 February 1980
Assigned 1 March 1980 – 1 November 1991
  • 4443d Tactical Training: 26 January 1990 – 1 November 1991


  • 64th Fighter Weapons (later, 64th Tactical Fighter Training Aggressor; 64th Aggressor): 15 October 1972 – 5 October 1990.
  • 65th Fighter Weapons (later, 65th Tactical Fighter Training Aggressor; 65th Aggressor): 15 October 1969 – 7 April 1989.
  • 66th Fighter Weapons: 15 October 1969 – 30 December 1981
  • 414th Fighter Weapons: 15 October 1969 – 30 December 1981
  • 422d Fighter Weapons (later, 422d Test and Evaluation): 15 October 1969 – 1 November 1991
  • 431st Fighter Weapons (later, 431st Test and Evaluation): 1 October 1980 – 1 November 1991
  • 433d Fighter Weapons: 1 October 1976 – 30 December 1981
  • 4460th Helicopter: 1 November 1983 – 1 June 1985
  • 4477th Test and Evaluation Flight (later, 4477th Test and Evaluation Squadron): 1 April 1977 – 15 July 1990
  • USAF Air Demonstration Squadron: 15 February 1974 – present

Aircraft flownEdit


List of commandersEdit

No. Commander[3] Term
Portrait Name Took office Left office Duration
Major General
Ralph G. Taylor Jr.
September 1, 1966December 15, 19693 years, 82 days
Brigadier General
Homer K. Hansen
November 22, 1969July 23, 19711 year, 243 days
Major General
William S. Chairsell
July 23, 1971June 29, 19731 year, 341 days
Major General
Gordon F. Blood
June 29, 1973February 10, 19751 year, 226 days
Major General
James A. Knight Jr.
February 10, 1975June 12, 19772 years, 122 days
Major General
James R. Hildreth
June 12, 1977March 30, 19791 year, 291 days
Major General
Robert E. Kelley
March 30, 1979June 3, 19812 years, 65 days
Major General
Jack I. Gregory
June 3, 1981May 11, 19831 year, 342 days
Major General
Eugene H. Fischer
May 11, 1983July 13, 19852 years, 63 days
Major General
Peter T. Kempf
July 13, 1985June 21, 19882 years, 344 days
Major General
Joseph W. Ashy
June 21, 1988July 19, 19891 year, 28 days
Major General
Billy G. McCoy
July 19, 1989June 5, 19922 years, 322 days
Major General
Thomas R. Griffith
June 5, 1992July 21, 19942 years, 46 days
Major General
Richard C. Bethurem
July 21, 1994April 4, 19961 year, 258 days
Major General
Marvin R. Esmond
April 4, 1996July 7, 19982 years, 94 days
Major General
Glen W. Moorhead III
July 7, 1998January 31, 20001 year, 208 days
Major General
Lawrence D. Johnston
January 31, 2000June 25, 20022 years, 145 days
Major General
Stephen G. Wood
June 25, 2002October 4, 20042 years, 101 days
Major General
Stephen M. Goldfein
October 4, 2004October 6, 20062 years, 2 days
Major General
R. Michael Worden
October 6, 2006February 8, 20081 year, 125 days
Major General
Stephen L. Hoog
February 8, 2008May 18, 20091 year, 99 days
Major General
Stanley T. Kresge[4]
May 18, 2009November 20101 year, 167 days
Major General
James W. Hyatt[5]
November 2010July 20, 20121 year, 262 days
Major General
Jeffrey G. Lofgren[6]
July 20, 2012January 20141 year, 165 days
Major General
Jay B. Silveria
February 21, 2014March 20162 years, 9 days
Major General
Glen D. VanHerck
March 2016July 13, 20171 year, 134 days
Major General
Peter E. Gersten[7]
July 13, 2017June 2, 20191 year, 324 days
Brigadier General
David W. Snoddy
June 2, 2019July 12, 201940 days
Major General
Charles Corcoran[8]
July 12, 2019June 18, 20211 year, 341 days
Major General
Case Cunningham[9]
June 18, 2021Incumbent1 year, 109 days


  This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website https://www.afhra.af.mil/.

  1. ^ a b c d e "U.S. Air Force Warfare Center Fact Sheet". Archived from the original on September 5, 2015. Retrieved March 24, 2014.
  2. ^ a b "U.S. Air Force Historical Research Agency, 57th Wing". Archived from the original on May 7, 2011. Retrieved October 2, 2008.
  3. ^ "USAF Warfare Center (ACC)".
  4. ^ "Lieutenant General Stanley T. Kresge".
  5. ^ "Major General James W. Hyatt".
  6. ^ "Lieutenant General Jeffrey G. Lofgren".
  7. ^ "MAJOR GENERAL PETER e. GERSTEN > U.S. Air Force > Biography Display". Archived from the original on 24 February 2019. Retrieved 25 September 2020.
  8. ^ "Charles S. Corcoran".
  9. ^ "MAJOR GENERAL CASE A. CUNNINGHAM". Retrieved 20 June 2021.