Thomas K. Gainey is Director of International Affairs and Foreign Policy Advisor to the commander at Air Combat Command. In his current role, he serves as command focal point and advisor on politico-military affairs, policy analysis, and global US strategic interests. In addition to leading the Directorate’s daily operations, Mr. Gainey provides executive supervision of the Directorate’s Security Cooperation, International Engagements, and Politico-Military Affairs Divisions in the execution of command-wide foreign programs impacting US strategic partners. In order to advance command interests, Mr. Gainey commonly communicates across the interagency and directly with foreign leadership to insure the timely flow of information.
Mr. Gainey is also a retired Army Aviator having served over 30 years on Active Duty serving in staff and command positions through the O-6 level. He was commissioned into the US Army in August 1982 graduating from James Madison University. He has served in multiple Joint and Multinational commands throughout his career. He has served in multiple NATO assignments in Europe. As a Civil Servant, he has previously served as an International Affairs Specialist and in Political Advisor positions to Commander US Navy Europe & Africa, Commander Joint Force Command Naples (NATO), Commander Support and Striking Forces NATO. Mr. Gainey also served as a Course Director for Trans-Atlantic Civil Security at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies teaching Advanced Security Studies.
Mr. Gainey’s experience both in the military as well as his civilian experience includes a wide spectrum of operating in multinational environments with military, civil and non-governmental agency actors. His operational experiences include multiple deployments in Central America, the Balkans, and the Middle East planning for crisis response operations, security assistance operations, and peacekeeping operations. His experience also includes service in NATO both in uniform and as a civilian.
1982 Bachelor of Science, Political Science, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Va.
1982 Transportation Officer Basic Course, Fort Eustis, Va.
1983 Rotary Wing Aviator Qualification Course, Fort Rucker, Ala.
1984 Aircraft Maintenance Officer Course, Fort Eustis, Va.
1984 Aviation Maintenance Test Pilot Course, Fort Eustis, Va.
1987 Aviation Officer Advanced Course, Fort Rucker, Ala.
1987 Air Assault School, Fort Rucker, Ala.
1987 Fixed Wing Aviator Qualification Course, Fort Rucker, Ala.
1989 Master of Science and Systems Management, Information Systems, University of Southern California, California
1990 Stall, Spin, Aerobatic Qualification Course, Jacksonville, Fla.
1990 Combined Arms Services Staff School, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
1996 US Army Command and Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
2006 Master of Science Joint Campaign Planning and National Strategy, Joint Advanced Warfighting School, National Defense University
1. August 1982 – August 1992, Various leadership and staff positions in tactical aviation units in CONUS, Germany, El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala
2. August 1992 – August 1994, Commander, Fixed Wing Priority Air Transport, Operational Support Airlift Command, Fort Belvoir, Va.
3. August 1994 – July 1995, Operations Officer, Operational Support Airlift Command, Fort Belvoir, Va.
4. August 1996 – July 1997, Battalion Executive Officer, 2-502 Aviation Regiment, Mannheim, Germany
5. August 1997 – June 1998, Battalion Operations Officer, 2-502 Aviation Regiment, Mannheim, Germany
6. July 1998 - June 1999, Aviation Management Officer, HQ US Army Europe, Heidelberg, Germany
7. July 1999 – March 2000, Chief, New Systems Training Division, US Army Aviation Logistics School, Fort Eustis, Va.
8. June 2002 – December 2003, Executive Officer to J-3/J-7, Joint Force Command Naples (NATO), Naples, Italy
9. December 2003 – July 2005, Director, Multinational Joint Logistics Center, Joint Force Command Naples (NATO), Italy
10. June 2006 – December 2007, Chief of Plans, Standing Joint Force Headquarters (CENTCOM/JFCOM), Norfolk, Va.
11. December 2007 – June 2009, Director, Air Land Sea Applications, Langley Air Force Base, Va.
12. June 2009 – September 2010, Course Director, George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
13. September 2010 – September 2012, Chief of Staff, George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
14. October 2012 – December 2015, Business Development Manager, USASAC/FMS Account Lead, SAIC, Huntsville, Ala.
15. May 2016 – July 2017, Lead Aviation Test Integrator, US Army Redstone Test Center, Huntsville, Ala.
16. August 2017 – September 2020, International Affairs Specialist and Political Advisor, Commander US Navy Europe & Africa, Commander, Joint Force Command Naples (NATO) and Commander STRIKFORNATO, Naples, Italy and Lisbon, Portugal
17. September 2020 – September 2022, Director, US Army Europe Mission Support Element – Vicenza, Vicenza, Italy
18. Septemnber 2022 – Current, Director of International Affairs and Foreign Policy Advisor to the Commander at Air Combat Command, Langley AFB, Va.
Rating: Master Army Aviator
Flight hours: 3,150
Aircraft flown: UH-1, OH-58 A/C/D, UH-60 A/L, C-12, U-21, PC-6