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Lieutenant Colonel LIEUTENANT COLONEL BENNY WARD

Lt Col Benny Ward is the Group Commander of the 145th Maintenance Group, North Carolina Air National Guard, located at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport, Charlotte, North Carolina. Lt Col Ward provides leadership and management to a group of 253 Officers and Airmen consisting of the 145th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, the 145th Maintenance Squadron, and the 145th Maintenance Operations Flight. He is responsible for over 368 million dollars in aircraft and equipment, and oversees the day-to-day maintenance production for all flying activities for the 145th Airlift Wing. 

Lt Col Ward started his military career in 1983 when he enlisted in the United State Air Force. His first assignments was an Aircraft Pneudraulics System Mechanic at Rhein-Main AFB, Germany and follow-on assignment at Dyess AFB, Abilene, TX. Lt Col Ward enlisted in the North Carolina Air National Guard in 1990. His first  assignment was as a Non-Destructive Inspection Specialist with the 145th Maintenance Squadron. In 1994 he cross-trained to Telephone Data Circuitry Equipment Journeyman with the 145th Communications Flight where he further progressed as the Telephone Data Maintenance NCOIC. In 2004 he was awarded 
his Bachelor of Arts degree in Management and Ethics at John Wesley College, High Point, N.C. Lt Col Ward was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in November 2004. He completed Aircraft Maintenance Officer Course in 2005 at Sheppard AFB, Wichita Falls, TX and was assigned as Maintenance Operations Officer in the 145 Aircraft Maintenance Squadron. In December 2012, he was appointed as the Commander, 145th Maintenance Operations Flight. In June 2017, he was appointed to be the Aircraft Maintenance Squadron Commander for the 145th AMXS. In November of 2019, he was appointed to be the Deputy Commander for the 145th Maintenance Group. In April of 2022, he was appointed to be the Group Commander for the 145th Maintenance Group. 

Lt Col Ward’s contingency command highlights include; 2006 – Maintenance Officer, Operation Joint Forge, Ramstein AB, Germany, 2007 – Maintenance Officer, Wild Land Firefighting Operations, Channel Island ANG Base, CA, 2010 – Maintenance Officer, Operation Cornet Oak, Muniz ANG Base, Puerto Rico, 2011 – OIC, Operation Enduring Freedom, C-130 Aircraft Maintenance Unit (AMU), 455th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Bagram AB, Afghanistan, 2013 – Maintenance Officer, Operation Cornet Oak, Muniz ANG Base, Puerto Rico, 2016 – Maintenance Officer, Operation Cornet Oak, NC ANG Base, Charlotte NC.

EDUCATION 

1995

Associate of Applied Science, Electronic Engineering, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, Concord, NC

2002

Bachelor of Arts, Management and Ethics, John Wesley College, High Point, NC

2005

Academy of Military Science

2011

Squadron Officer School

2015

Air Command and Staff College


ASSIGNMENTS
October 1983 – April 1987                             Aircraft Pneudraulics Specialist, 435th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Rhein-Main AB, Germany
April 1987 – April 1988                                   Aircraft Pneudraulics Specialist, 317th Maintenance Squadron, Dyess AF Base, Abilene, TX
August 1990 – November 1994                     Non-Destructive Inspection Specialist, 145th Maintenance Squadron Charlotte, NC
November 1994 – November 2004                Telephone Data Circuitry Equipment Journeyman, 145th Communication Flight, Charlotte, NC
November 2004 – December 2012                Maintenance Officer, 145th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Charlotte, NC
December 2012 – June 2017                         Commander, 145th Maintenance Operations Flight, Charlotte, NC
June 2017 – November 2019                         Commander, 145th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Charlotte, NC
November 2019 – March 2022                       Deputy Commander, 145th Maintenance Group, Charlotte, NC
April 2022 – Present                                       Group Commander, 145th Maintenance Group, Charlotte, NC

MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Meritorious Service Medal with three device
Air Force Commendation Medal with one device
Air Force Achievement Medal with one device
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with one device
Air Force Good Conduct Medal
Air Reserve Forces Meritorious Service Medal with three devices
National Defense Service Medal with one device
Afghanistan Campaign Medal with one device
Humanitarian Service Medal
Air Force Overseas Ribbon Long
Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with Gold Border
Air Force Longevity Service Ribbon with four devices
Armed Forces Reserve Medal with two device
USAF NCO PME Graduate Ribbon
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon (Rifle)
Air Force Training Ribbon with one device NATO Medal

STATE AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
North Carolina National Guard Achievement Medal
North Carolina National Guard State Service Ribbon with one device
North Carolina National Guard State Active Duty Ribbon

PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIP AND ASSOCIATIONS
National Guard Association of the United States
North Carolina National Guard Association