An Air Force three-star general has been nominated to become the deputy commander of U.S. Strategic Commander, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Jan. 13.
Lt. Gen. Thomas Bussiere current serves as commander of the Alaskan Command at U.S. Northern Command, as well as the commander of the 11th Air Force at Pacific Air Forces, and commander of the Alaskan North American Aerospace Defense (NORAD) Region at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska.
In his roles, he is the senior military officer in Alaska and is responsible for integrating all military activities in the Alaska joint operations area. As commander of NORAD’s Alaskan Region, he directs operations that ensure proper surveillance, monitoring and defense of the area’s airspace, and is responsible for planning and executing all homeland defense operations within that area of responsibility. As leader of the 11th Air Force, Bussiere is responsible for the training and readiness of five wings and Air Force installations in Alaska, Hawaii and Guam.
Bussiere commissioned into the Air Force in 1985, and pinned on his third star in August 2018. Prior to his current assignments in Alaska, he most recently served as commander of the 8th Air Force and Joint-Global Strike Operations Center at Barksdale AFB, Louisiana; before that, he served as the Joint Functional Component Commander for Global Strike at STRATCOM from Offutt AFB, Nebraska.
He would maintain his rank if confirmed to become the next STRATCOM deputy commander. The Senate Armed Services Committee has not yet set a date for his confirmation hearing.
Vice Adm. David Kriete currently serves as deputy commander of U.S. Strategic Command. His follow-on assignment has not yet been announced, a command spokesperson said in a Monday email to Defense Daily.