Lt. Gen. B. Chance Saltzman has been nominated to be the next Chief of Space Operations for the US Space Force.
If confirmed by the Senate, Saltzman will become the service’s highest-ranking officer and the second chief of space operations in the fledgling service’s history. Saltzman will fill the position currently held by General John W. “Jay” Raymond, who has led the Space Force since its inception in December 2019. Raymond is expected to retire later this year.
“I am very humbled and honored by the appointment as the second Chief of Space Operations. If confirmed, Jennifer and I will be committed to building on the incredible foundation that General Jay and Mollie Raymond have put in place for our service. and we are eternally grateful for their service and dedication,” Saltzman said.
Raymond congratulated Saltzman and his appointment and paid tribute to the Guardians and Airmen he led during his career.
“It has been the honor of a lifetime to lead Guardians and Airmen and to serve as Space Force’s first Chief of Space Operations. I couldn’t be more excited for the next chapter of the greatest space force in the world. world and the appointment of Chance Saltzman as our next CSO,” said Raymond.
“His vast space experience and deep understanding of how to integrate space into our nation’s defense has made him indispensable to the establishment of this service and Guardians everywhere will not find a more loyal teammate. .” Raymond said.
Likewise, Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall praised Raymond for his tenure and for the way he built Space Force. Kendall said Saltzman was the perfect candidate to build on Space Force’s accomplishments.
“General Jay Raymond has worked tirelessly to create a strong foundation for Space Force and to prepare our Guardians for long-term success. Every American should be grateful for what he has accomplished,” Kendall said.
“I’m confident General Saltzman has the skills and drive to build on this base, and if confirmed, I look forward to the opportunity to work with him as the second Chief of Space Operations.” he declared.
If confirmed, Saltzman would inherit a space force as it continues its transition from the early stages of planning and organization needed to form the first new branch of the military since 1947 to one that focuses more on the operational imperatives of the Department of the Air Force.
As of August 2020, Saltzman has served as Deputy Chief of Space Operations for Operations, Cyber and Nuclear. In this role, Saltzman has overall responsibility for Space Force operations, intelligence, sustainment, cyber and nuclear operations.
Commissioned in 1991 after graduating from Boston University, he has extensive missile and space systems operational experience as a Minuteman III launch officer and as a satellite operator for National Reconnaissance. Office. He also served as the first Chief of Combat Plans for the Joint Space Operations Center, and later as Chief of Combat Operations.
Saltzman commanded at the squadron, group, and wing levels, including the 614th Space Operations Squadron and the 1st Space Control Squadron at what is now Space Force Base Vandenberg, California. , as well as the 460th Operations Group at what is now Buckley Space Force Base, Colorado.
Prior to serving in his current assignment under Raymond, Saltzman was the Deputy Commander of U.S. Air Forces Central Command; Deputy, Combined Force Air Component Commander, U.S. Central Command, Southwest Asia.
During his time in the Air Force and later the Space Force, Saltzman earned a collection of notable awards and decorations, including the Defense Superior Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Legion of merit with two oak leaf clusters and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.