Colonel Diane E. Patton is the Commander, 916th Air Refueling Wing, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. She commands over 1100 personnel within this key air refueling organization, which is the first unit equipped KC-46 Pegasus wing in Air Force Reserve Command.

Originally from Connecticut, Colonel Patton first enlisted in the U.S. Air Force Reserve in November 1997 as an aerospace medical technician and received her degree at the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania in 2002. She earned her commission at Air Force Officer Training School and completed Joint Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training at NAS Corpus Christi, receiving the Commodore’s Distinction. She completed her initial qualification on the C-130H at Little Rock AFB, later serving as an initial AWADS cadre instructor pilot and on wing staff prior to a tour with the Air Force Reserve Programs and Requirements office, where she managed $670M annual total obligation authority for a broad portfolio of tactical airlift, personnel recovery, special operations, and aerial port assets. As former Commander, 908th Operations Group, she led the final combat deployment of the Wing’s C-130H Hercules aircraft and integrated the mission transition to the MH-139 Grey Wolf formal training unit.

Prior to her current assignment, she served as the Commander, 315th Operations Group, Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina, where she led over 600 personnel in seven squadrons to train and maintain combat skills in global mobility airlift and airdrop, aeromedical evacuation, contingency response, and combat camera operations. She has deployed in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom, and New Dawn. Colonel Patton is a command pilot, having flown more than 3,100 hours, including over 400 combat hours.
2002 Bachelor of Science in Natural Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
2007 Reserve Component Joint Officer Professional Development Seminar, Washington, D.C.
2008 Squadron Officer School, by correspondence
2009 Master of Arts in Management, American Military University, Charles Town, WV
2012 Aviation Safety Program Management Course, Kirtland AFB, NM
2012 Aircraft Mishap Investigation Course, Kirtland AFB, NM
2016 Master of Military Operational Art and Science, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, AL
2016 Naval Strategy and War, Naval War College, Newport, RI
2019 Information Environment Advanced Analysis, USSOUTHCOM, Doral, FL
2020 Joint Combined Warfighting School-Hybrid, by correspondence
2020 Air War College, by correspondence
2021 Reserve Component National Security Course, National Defense University, Washington, D.C.
2023 Director of Mobility Forces, Air Force Expeditionary Operations School, Hurlburt Field, FL
2024 Enterprise Perspective Seminar, Alan L. Freed Associates, Washington, D.C.
1. November 1997 – February 2004, Aerospace Medical Technician, 911th Aeromedical Staging Squadron, Pittsburgh International Airport Air Reserve Station, Pa.
2. February 2004 – May 2004, Distinguished Graduate, Officer Training School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
3. June 2004 – December 2004, Student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, Columbus AFB, Miss.
4. January 2005 – July 2005, Student, Commodore’s List with Distinction, Undergraduate Pilot Training, NAS Corpus Christi, Texas
5. October 2005 – May 2006, Distinguished Graduate, C-130 Initial Qualification Training, Little Rock AFB, Ark.
6. June 2006 – June 2012, C-130 Instructor Pilot, scheduling officer, squadron tactics, 758th Airlift Squadron, Pittsburgh IAP ARS, Pa.
7. June 2012 – July 2015, Chief of Safety, 911th Airlift Wing, Pittsburgh IAP ARS, Pa.
8. July 2015 – June 2016, Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
9. July 2016 – August 2018, Chief, Global Mobility Programming and Chief, Tactical Airlift Requirements, Reserve Programs and Requirements, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
10. August 2018 – April 2020, Director of Operations, 357th Airlift Squadron, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
11. April 2020 – August 2022, Commander, 908th Operations Group, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
12. September 2022 – April 2024, Commander, 315th Operations Group, Joint Base Charleston, S.C.
13. April 2024 – present, Commander, 916th Air Refueling Wing, Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C.
Rating: Command Pilot
Flight hours: More than 3,100
Aircraft flown: T-37, TC-12, C-130E/H, C-17A
Air Force Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal
Air Force Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster
2000 HQ AFRC Olson-Wegner Award
2001 Innovative Development through Employee Awareness (IDEA) Award
Second Lieutenant May 14, 2004
First Lieutenant May 14, 2006
Captain May 14, 2008
Major May 14, 2013
Lieutenant Colonel Aug 31, 2018
Colonel Apr 12, 2023
(Current as of April 2024)