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Col. Curtis L. Pitts is the Commander, 44th Fighter Group, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. He is responsible for providing a force comprised of more than 260 Air Force Reserve Airmen and civilian personnel who execute an F-22 Raptor formal training mission and a T-38 adversary support mission. The 44 FG is a Classic Associate Air Force Reserve unit integrated with Air Combat Command’s 325th Fighter Wing.

Col. Pitts entered the Air Force in 1996 through the Reserve Officer Training Corps, Mississippi State University. He served on active duty for 13 years before transitioning to the Air Force Reserve in 2009. He has spent more than 19 years in fighter operations and has served in various leadership positions at the squadron, group, wing and deployed joint headquarters levels with experience in F-16 Fighting Falcon operational test, F-35 Lightning II program integration, and security program management. He has also served as an F-16 and F-35A flight examiner, instructor pilot, weapons officer, forward air controller-airborne and mission commander.

Col. Pitts has flown missions supporting Operations JOINT FORGE, JOINT GUARDIAN, NORTHERN WATCH, SOUTHERN WATCH and NOBLE EAGLE. He has also supported coalition ground forces in Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. In his civilian capacity, he is a commercial pilot for a major airline. Prior to his current position, the colonel served as a Command Center Director, North American Aerospace Defense/U.S. Northern Command, Peterson Air Force Base, Colo.


1996 Bachelor of Science, Aerospace Engineering, Mississippi State University

2004 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.

2011 Air Command an Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence

2013 Master of Military Operational Art and Science, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence

2017 Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence

2019 Joint Professional Military Education Phase II, Joint Forces Staff College, Norfolk, Va.


1. May 1996–December 1996, Special Assistant to the Commander, Reserve Officer Training Corps Detachment 425, Mississippi State University

2. December 1996–January 1998, Student, Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training, Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas

3. January 1998–May 1998, Student, Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals, Columbus AFB, Miss.

4. May 1998–February 1999, Student, F-16 Initial Qualification Training, 308th Fighter Squadron, Luke AFB, Ariz.

5. February 1999–March 2000, Assistant Training Officer, 36 FS, Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea

6. March 2000–February 2001, Electronic Combat Pilot, 510 FS, Aviano AB, Italy (March 2000–June 2000, Assistant Scheduling Officer, 510th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron, Ahmad al-Jaber AB, Kuwait)

7. February 2001–February 2002, Weapons and Tactics Officer, 31st Fighter Wing Operations Support Squadron, Aviano AB, Italy (May 2001–July 2001, Assistant Weapons Officer, 510 EFS, Incirlik AB, Turkey)

8. February 2002–June 2003, F-16 Instructor Pilot and Flight Commander, 510 FS, Aviano AB, Italy (March 2002–May 2002, Combat Search and Rescue Pilot, 510 EFS, Incirlik AB, Turkey)

9. June 2003–December 2003, Student, USAF Weapons Instructor Course, Nellis AFB, Nev.

10. December 2003–December 2004, Chief of Weapons and Tactics, 522 FS, Cannon AFB, N.M.

11. December 2004–August 2006, Chief of Weapons and Tactics, 524 FS, Cannon AFB, N.M. (May 2005–June 2005, Chief of Weapons and Tactics, 524 FS, Robert Gray Army Airfield, Texas)

12. August 2006–February 2007, Chief of Scheduling, 422d Test and Evaluation Squadron, Nellis AFB, Nev.

13. February 2007–August 2008, Division Commander, 59th Test and Evaluation Squadron, Nellis AFB, Nev. (February 2008–May 2008, Deputy Joint Terminal Attack Controller Cell Chief, International Security Assistance Force Headquarters, Kabul, Afghanistan)

14. August 2008–April 2009, Chief of Standardization and Evaluation, 53rd Test and Evaluation Group, Nellis AFB, Nev.

15. April 2009–August 2011, Wing Program Manager, 419 FW, Hill AFB, Utah

16. August 2011–September 2014, Assistant Director of Operations, 466 FS, Hill AFB, Utah (September 2011–December 2011, Project Officer, 421 EFS, Kunsan AB, Republic of Korea)

17. September 2014–September 2016, Commander, 419 FW Operations Group Detachment 1, Hill AFB, Utah

18. September 2016–September 2018, Chief of Safety, 419 FW, Hill AFB, Utah (March 2018–May 2018, Senior Reserve Liaison, 34 EFS, Kadena AB, Japan)

19. September 2018–July 2020, Command Center Director, North American Aerospace Defense/US Northern Command, Peterson AFB, Colo.

20. July 2020–present, Commander, 44th Fighter Group, Eglin AFB, Fla.


1. September 2018–July 2020, Command Center Director, North American Aerospace Defense/US Northern Command, Peterson AFB, Colo., as a colonel


Rating:  command pilot

Flight hours:  more than 2,900

Aircraft flown:  T-37, T-38, A/T-38B, F-16C+, F-16CG, F-16CJ, F-16CM and F-35A


Meritorious Service Medal with five oak leaf clusters

Air Medal

Aerial Achievement Medal

Air Force Commendation Medal

Joint Service Achievement Medal

Air Force Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster


Second Lieutenant May 29, 1996

First Lieutenant May 29, 1998

Captain May 29, 2000

Major June 1, 2006

Lieutenant Colonel June 1, 2013

Colonel September 8, 2018


(Current as of November 2021)

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