Colonel John J. Sheets is the director of public affairs for Air Combat Command, which primarily organizes, trains, equips, and maintains the Air Force’s fighter, command- and-control, personnel recovery and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance forces. The command operates more than 1,000 aircraft, 35 wings, 12 bases, and has more than 242 worldwide locations with 156,739 total force military and civilian personnel.
Colonel Sheets received his commission through the Air Force ROTC program at the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1996. He has served in wing, center, major command, Air Staff and Department of Defense positions, and has deployed multiple times in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom and Inherent Resolve. Prior to his current position, Colonel Sheets was the Director of Strategy, Plans and Assessment in the Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs.
1996 Bachelor of Arts, Political Science, University of Missouri, Columbia, Mo.
1997 Defense Information School, Fort Meade, Md.
2002 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2009 Master of Military Operational Art and Science, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2018 Master of Strategic Studies, Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1. July 1996 – November 1996, Student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Vance Air Force Base, Okla.
2. November 1996 – June 1999, Public Affairs Officer, Space and Missile Systems Center, Los Angeles AFB, Calif.
3. June 1999 – March 2002, Deputy Chief of Public Affairs, 374th Airlift Wing, Yokota Air Base, Japan.
4. March 2002 – July 2005, Chief of Public Affairs, 314th Airlift Wing, Little Rock AFB, Ark. (February 2003 – August 2003, Chief of Public Affairs, 386th Air Expeditionary Wing, Ali Al Salem AB, Kuwait, later Chief of Public Affairs, 332d Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs, Ahmed Al Jaber AB, Kuwait)
5. July 2005 – July 2008, Chief, Current Operations, later Chief, Requirements and Development, Air Mobility Command Public Affairs, Scott AFB, Ill. (September 2007 – January 2008, Chief of Public Affairs, 332d Air Expeditionary Wing, Balad AB, Iraq)
6. August 2008 – June 2009, Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
7. June 2009 – May 2011, Chief of Force Integration, Requirements and Development Division, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C. (January 2010 - July 2010, Strategic Communication Analyst, Headquarters International Security Assistance Force, Kabul, Afghanistan)
8. May 2011 – July 2012, Executive Officer to the Director, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
9. July 2012 – June 2013, Strategic Communication Advisor to the Air Force Chief of Staff, Secretary of the Air Force and Air Force Chief of Staff Executive Action Group, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
10. July 2013 – June 2017, Director of Public Affairs, Air Force Global Strike Command, Barksdale AFB, La. (October 2016 – May 2017, Director of Public Affairs, U.S. Air Forces Central Command, Al Udeid AB, Qatar).
11. July 2017 – May 2018, Student, Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
12. May 2018 – June 2020, Director of Strategy, Plans and Assessment, Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
13. June 2020 – present, Director of Public Affairs, Headquarters, Air Combat Command, Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va.
SUMMARY OF JOINT ASSIGNMENTS
1. May 2018 – June 2020, Director of Strategy, Plans and Assessment, Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., as a Colonel
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with five oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Force Achievement Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant June 9, 1996
First Lieutenant June 9, 1998
Captain June 9, 2000
Major June 1, 2006
Lieutenant Colonel Sept. 1, 2011
Colonel Nov. 1, 2017
(Current as of July 2020)