Colonel David J. Morales is the deputy commander, 62d Airlift Wing, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington. He assists the commander in ensuring the readiness of more than 2,400 active-duty military and civilian personnel, along with 40 C-17 Globemaster III aircraft, to support worldwide combat and humanitarian and airdrop operations. He is also charged with overseeing the wing’s programs on human resource management, environmental issues, installation security and readiness.
In addition, the 62 AW serves as the primary active-duty wing in support of Operation DEEP FREEZE, partnering with Reserve, Guard and civilian agencies to provide airlift support for the National Science Foundation’s U.S. Antarctic Program. The wing also provides mission support to the 446th Airlift Wing (Associate).
Colonel Morales graduated from the United States Air Force Academy with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Mechanics. He was commissioned with military honors as a second lieutenant in 2002 and completed undergraduate pilot training at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas. Col. Morales has held positions in operational flying units at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington; Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii; and Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina. His staff jobs include serving as the Aide-de-Camp to the commander, Pacific Air Forces; the current operations (J33) division chief for the Alaskan Command (ALCOM), Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska; and the director of air operations at the Joint U.S. Military Advisory Group (JUSMAG), Bangkok, Thailand. Col. Morales commanded the 437th Operations Support Squadron at Joint Base Charleston before attending the Geneva Center for Security Policy in Switzerland. Prior to his current position, Col. Morales was the director, strategy directorate, 618th Air Operations Center, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois. Col. Morales is a graduate of the C-17 Weapons School, and a command pilot with over 4,100 flying hours in the T-37, T-1 and C-17A; including 1,100 combat hours in support of Operations IRAQI FREEDOM, ENDURING FREEDOM, and Overseas Contingency Operations.
2002 Bachelor of Science in Engineering Mechanics, United States Air Force Academy, Colo.
2008 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2008 Master of Business Administration, International Finance, Trident University International, Calif.
2010 U.S. Air Force C-17 Weapons Instructor Course, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J.
2012 Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence
2014 Joint Professional Military Education II, Joint and Combined Warfighting School, Norfolk, Va.
2016 Master of Science, Defense Analysis, Naval Postgraduate School, Calif.
2019 International Defense Attaché Course, Geneva Center for Security Policy, Geneva, Switzerland
2019 Leadership in International Security Course, Geneva Center for Security, Geneva, Switzerland
2019 Security Cooperation Management Overseas Course, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio
2023 Director of Mobility Course, Hurlburt Field, Fla.
1. December 2002 – December 2003, Student, Undergraduate Pilot Training, 47th Flying Training Wing, Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas
2. January 2004 – August 2009, C-17 Lead Airdrop IP/Demo Pilot, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.
3. September 2009 – January 2010, C-17 Lead Airdrop IP, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
4. January 2010 – July 2010, Student, C-17 Weapons Instructor Course, 57th Weapons Squadron, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J.
5. July 2010 – August 2012, C-17 Airdrop EP/Demo Pilot, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
6. August 2012 – July 2013, Aide-de-Camp to the commander, Pacific Air Forces, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
7. July 2013 – July 2015, Division Chief, Current Operations (J33)/Interagency Coordinator, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska
8. July 2015 – January 2017, Student, Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, Calif.
9. February 2016 – August 2018, Commander, 437th Operational Support Squadron, Joint Base Charleston, S.C.
10. September 2018 – August 2019, Student, Geneva Center for Security Policy, Geneva, Switzerland
11. September 2019 – July 2021, Director, Air Operations, Joint U.S. Military Advisory Group, Bangkok, Thailand
12. July 2021 – July 2022, Director, Strategy Directorate, 618th Air Operations Center, Scott Air Force Base, Ill.
13. July 2022 – Present, Deputy Commander, 62d Airlift Wing, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.
SUMMARY OF JOINT ASSIGNMENTS
1. July 2013 – June 2015, Division Chief, Current Operations (J33)/Interagency Coordinator, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, as a Major
2. August 2019 – July 2021, Director, Air Operations, Joint Operations Directorate, Joint U.S. Military Advisory Group, Bangkok, Thailand, as a Lieutenant Colonel and Colonel
Rating: Command Pilot
Flight hours: More than 4,200
Aircraft flown: T-37, T-1 and C-17A
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Defense Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with seven oak leaf clusters
Aerial Achievement Medal
Air and Space Commendation Medal
Joint Service Achievement Medal
Air and Space Achievement Medal
Joint Meritorious Unit Award
Meritorious Unit Award with three oak leaf clusters
Air and Space Outstanding Unit Award with “V” device and three oak leaf clusters
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 29, 2002
First Lieutenant May 29, 2004
Captain May 29, 2006
Major April 1, 2012
Lieutenant Colonel Jan. 1, 2016
Colonel July 1, 2021
(Current as of August 2023)