Ryan promoted, takes command of Virginia Air National Guard

  • Published
  • By Mr. Cotton Puryear
  • Virginia National Guard Public Affairs
Col. Jeffrey L. Ryan was officially promoted to brigadier general Feb. 15, 2019, during a ceremony at the Virginia National Guard Sergeant Bob Slaughter Headquarters at Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia, and took command of the Virginia Air National Guard. Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, announced Feb. 6, 2019, that Ryan would succeed Brig. Gen. Marshall Kjelvik as the VNG Air Component Commander effective Feb. 5. Ryan most recently served as the vice commander of the 192nd Wing at Joint Base Langley-Eustis in Hampton.

Ryan has extensive command experience at the squadron and group levels, as well as staff time as Virginia Air National Guard director of logistics, Williams wrote in the announcement. “Jeff’s breadth and depth of experience have uniquely prepared him to lead our Airmen at this most senior level, and we look forward to seeing how he builds on the strong foundation laid by Brig. Gen. Kjelvik,” he wrote.

As the ACC, Ryan is responsible for leading the Virginia Air National Guard, assisting and empowering Virginia Airmen in executing their respective plans, programs and missions. He analyzes and evaluates training programs and operational readiness levels to determine mission capability and unit effectiveness. He is the primary advisor to the Adjutant General of Virginia on Air National Guard state and federal readiness.

Kjelvik will retire after 37 years of service.

“Brig. Gen. Kjelvik has made lasting contributions to our organization over the past 12 years, notably leading the 192nd Intelligence Squadron, 192nd Mission Support Group, Joint Force Headquarters Air Staff and Virginia Air National Guard to several ‘firsts’ and propelling my strategic vision to new heights,” Williams wrote. “Marsh’s counsel and support, as my Air Component Commander, have been truly invaluable to me. Please join me in wishing him well in retirement, as I know there are many more ‘firsts’ in his future.”

Prior to his assignment as the vice wing commander, Ryan served as the commander of the 192nd Maintenance Group. During his career, he has deployed in support of Operations Southern Watch, Desert Thunder, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. Prior to serving as the Maintenance Group commander, he held other key positions including the Virginia National Guard Air Staff director of logistics, Mission Support Group commander and Aircraft Maintenance Squadron commander. During his career in aircraft maintenance, he has held various positions supporting F-16, A10, C-130, HH-60, C-141 and F-22 aircraft.

Ryan was commissioned as a Distinguished Air Force Graduate in 1995 from the Virginia Military Institute. He served four years in the active duty as an aircraft maintenance officer stationed at Moody Air Force Base, Georgia. He subsequently transitioned to the Air Force Reserve in 2000 and joined the Virginia Air National Guard in 2002.

He graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in International Studies and Modern Languages and earned a Masters of Public Administration from Valdosta State University, Georgia, in 1997. He is a graduate of the Squadron Officer School, the Air Command and Staff College and the Air War College.

In his civilian career, Ryan serves as the chief deputy commissioner for the Virginia Employment Commission.

His awards and decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, the Air Force Commendation Medal, Air Force Achievement Medal, the Meritorious Unit Award with one oak leaf cluster and the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with four oak leaf clusters.