Colonel Benito J. Barron is the Commander of the 820th Base Defense Group, Moody Air Force Base, Georgia. This unique group provides first in, highly capable, Airborne/Air Assault, force protection and contingency response capabilities for expeditionary air forces anywhere, anytime, and under austere conditions. The group staff and squadrons are composed of approximately 700 people in 22 functional career fields including civil engineering, communications, intelligence, explosive ordnance disposal, transportation, personnel, supply, emergency management, biomedical services, logistics plans, and security forces. The 820th Base Defense Group is the only Air Force unit specifically designed to provide fully integrated defense operations.
Prior to this position, Colonel Barron was the Chief of the Homeland Defense and Protection Division for Headquarters United States Northern Command where he was responsible for the planning and execution of land and maritime homeland defense, counterterrorism, and force protection.
Colonel Barron was commissioned through the Reserve Officer Training Corps in 1995, is a graduate of the Joint Advanced Warfighting School and has commanded the 647th Security Forces Squadron, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, HI; 4th Security Forces Squadron, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, NC; the 407th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron, Ali Base, Iraq; and the 569th United States Forces Police Squadron, Vogelweh, Germany. Colonel Barron has also held numerous staff positions to include a position as an Air Force Senate Liaison assigned to the Legislative Liaison Directorate, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
EDUCATION AND TRAINING
1995 Bachelor of Arts, Criminology, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL
2001 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, AL
2002 Masters of Science in International Relations, National Security Affairs, Troy State University, AL
2005 Air Command and Staff College (Correspondence)
2007 The Sabalauski Air Assault School, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Ft Campbell, KY
2008 Masters of Military Operational Art and Science, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL
2011 Air War College (Correspondence)
2016 Masters of Science in Joint Campaign Planning and Strategy, Joint Advanced Warfighting School, Norfolk, VA
2017 Executive Certificate in National Security Management, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY
1. 1995-1996, Minuteman ICBM Deputy Crew Commander, 446th Missile Squadron, Grand Forks AFB, ND
2. 1996-1997, Operations Standardization and Evaluation Deputy Missile Crew Commander, 321st Missile Group, Grand Forks AFB, ND
3. 1997-1998, Flight Commander, 341st Security Forces Squadron, Malmstrom AFB, MT
4. 1998-2000, Security Forces Commander, 564th Missile Squadron, Malmstrom AFB, MT
5. 2000-2001, Chief, Security Forces, 731st Munitions Support Squadron, Araxos Air Base, Greece
6. 2001-2002, Chief, Strategic Planning, Headquarters Electronic Systems Center, Hanscom AFB, MA
7. 2002-2003, Chief, Security Forces Requirements Division, Headquarters Electronic Security Center, Hanscom AFB, MA
8. 2003-2005, Chief, Protection Branch, Homeland Security Concept of Operations, Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
9. 2005-2007, Commander, 569th United States Forces Police Squadron, Vogelweh, Germany (Mar-Sep 2006--Commander, 407th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron, Ali Base, Iraq)
10. 2007-2008, Politico-Military Affairs Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL (May 2008--USAF Embassy Immersion Program, Public Affairs Section, Lima, Peru)
11. 2008-2010, Commander, 4th Security Forces Squadron, Seymour Johnson AFB, NC
12. 2010-2013, Air Force Senate Liaison and Chief, Congressional Support Branch, Legislative Liaison Directorate, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
13. 2013-2014, Commander, 647th Security Forces Squadron and Joint Base Security Officer, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, HI
14. 2014-2015, Chief, Security Forces Operations, Headquarters Pacific Air Forces, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, HI
15. 2015-2016, Student, Joint Advanced Warfighting School, Joint Forces Staff College, National Defense University, Norfolk, VA
16. 2016-2017, Chief, Civil Support Branch, US Northern Command, Peterson AFB, CO
17. 2017-2018, Chief, Homeland Defense and Protection, US Northern Command, Peterson AFB, CO
18. 2018-Present, Commander, 820th Base Defense Group, Moody AFB, Ga.
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Meritorious Service Medal with 6 Oak Leaf Clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters
Navy Commendation Medal
Air Force Achievement Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters
Iraq Campaign Medal
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with 4 Oak Leaf Clusters
Air Force Organizational Excellence Award
National Defense Service Medal with Bronze Star
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Humanitarian Service Medal
NATO Medal-Former Republic of Yugoslavia
(Current as of 15 March 18)