AFRL commander relieved from command

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Brig. Gen. Evan C. Dertien. Dertien’s previous assignments include attending the Test Pilot School from June 2001-June 2002; serving as an F-22 test pilot with the 411th Flight Test Squadron, from August 2003 to June 2005; serving as operations officer with the F-22 Combined Test Force from June 2007 to June 2008; commander of the 412th Test Wing from March 2012 to July 2012; and vice commander of the Air Force Test Center from July 2013 to February 2014. (Air Force photograph)

Gen. Arnold W. Bunch, Jr., commander of Air Force Materiel Command, relieved Air Force Research Laboratory Commander, Maj. Gen. William Cooley, from command Jan. 15 due to a loss of confidence in his ability to lead, related to alleged misconduct which is currently under investigation.

Bunch determined new leadership was necessary to ensure good order and discipline, and continued high performance within the organization.

“The Air Force takes any misconduct allegation seriously,” Bunch said.  “I expect our leadership to uphold the highest standards and live up to the Air Force’s core values.” 

Brig. Gen. Evan Dertien has been appointed as the AFRL commander. He most recently served as the Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command Director, Air, Space and Cyberspace Operations.  Dertien was previously AFRL’s vice commander from July 2016 to May 2017.

“I have great confidence in Brig. Gen. Dertien and in the professionalism of the entire AFRL workforce,” said Bunch.  “Together, they will remain focused on implementing the U.S. Air Force Science and Technology 2030 Strategy and ensuring AFRL is best postured to support the National Defense Strategy.”