Col. Kurt A. Tuininga serves as the vice commander of the 141st Air Refueling Wing, Fairchild Air Force Base, Washington. He assists the commander in directing and coordinating headquarter’s staff activities to assure the worldwide mission readiness of 1,000 Air National Guardsmen assigned to Fairchild AFB. He establishes policies for the unit administration, operations, training, maintenance and supply.
Col. Tuininga received his commission in the United States Air Force in December 1989 from the Reserve Officer Training Corps at Montana State University. He completed pilot training in 1992 at Williams AFB, Arizona and was initially assigned to the 91st Air Refueling Squadron at Malmstrom AFB, Montana, where he flew the KC-135R. Later that same year, he was assigned to the newly formed 97th Air Refueling Squadron. In 1994, the 97th Air Refueling Squadron was moved from Malmstrom AFB to Fairchild AFB. In 2000, he left the Active Duty and joined the Washington Air National Guard transitioning to the KC-135E with the 116th Air Refueling Squadron. During his career, he has deployed on numerous contingency missions including Operations DESERT SHIELD, PROVIDE COMFORT, NORTHERN WATCH, SOUTHERN WATCH, RESTORE HOPE, NOBLE EAGLE, IRAQI FREEDOM, ENDURING FREEDOM, INHERENT RESOLVE and FREEDOM’S SENTINEL.
Prior to his current position, Col. Tuininga was the commander for the 116th Air Refueling Squadron.
1989 Bachelor of Science, Computer Science, Montana State University, Bozeman, Mont.
1997 USAF Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2006 USAF Air Command and Staff College, by correspondence
2013 USAF Air War College, by correspondence
1. November 1990 – November 1991, student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Williams AFB, Ariz.
2. March 1992 – June 1992, student, KC-135 Combat Crew Training, Castle AFB, Calif.
3. February 1992 – October 1992, KC-135 co-pilot, 91st Air Refueling Squadron, Malmstrom AFB, Mont.
4. October 1992 – July 1994, KC-135 co-pilot, 97th Air Refueling Squadron, Malmstrom AFB, Mont.
5. August 1994 – March 1995, KC-135 co-pilot, 97th Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
6. March 1995 – December 1997, aircraft commander, chief executive officer, 97th Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
7. December 1997 – January 1999, instructor aircraft commander, chief executive officer, 97th Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
8. January 1999 – December 1999 evaluator pilot, standards and evaluations pilot, 97th Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
9. January 2000 – May 2004 aircraft commander, 116th Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
10. May 2004 – December 2004 instructor aircraft commander, standards and evaluations pilot, 116th ARS, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
11. December 2004 – April 2007 chief of current operations, 141st Operations Support Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
12. April 2007 – December 2010, chief of training, 141st Operations Support Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
13. December 2010 – April 2013, chief of standards and evaluations, 141st Operations Group, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
14. April 2013 – April 2015, director of operations, 116th Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
15. April 2015 – May 2018, commander, 116th Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
16. May 2018-present, vice commander, 141st Air Refueling Wing, Fairchild AFB, Wash.
Rating: Command Pilot
Flight hours: Over 4800
Aircraft flown: T-37, T-38, C-12F, KC-135E/R/T
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Meritorious Service Medal
Aerial Achievement Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster
AF Outstanding Unit Award with five oak leaf clusters
Combat Readiness Medal with twelve oak leaf clusters
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Nuclear Deterrence Operations Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with Gold Border and two oak leaf clusters
AF Longevity Service with four oak leaf clusters
Armed Forces Reserve Medal with 2 ‘M’ Device
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon (Pistol)
Kuwait Liberation Medal Government of Kuwait
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 28, 1990
First Lieutenant May 28, 1992
Captain May 28, 1994
Major June 5, 2000
Lieutenant Colonel Jun 5, 2007
Colonel May 4, 2018
(Current as of May 2018)