U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Tony Bauernfeind, Air Force Special Operations Command commander, gives opening remarks during the 1st Special Operations Wing change of command ceremony at Hurlburt Field, Florida, Feb. 23, 2024. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Bailey Wyman)

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Friday tapped a slew of officials to lead new positions in the Air Force, ranging from the head of the Air Force Academy to a key resource manager in the Pentagon, according to a DoD press release.

Among the nominees was Lt. Gen. Tony Bauernfeind, who has led Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) since December 2022. Bauernfeind was tapped for the superintendent role at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, where his predecessor, Lt. Gen. Richard Clark, guided the institution through the fallout of a 2020 cheating scandal that saw nearly two dozen cadets expelled and hundreds more placed on probation.

Bauernfeind’s relatively short tenure as commander of AFSOC was a tumultuous time for the command: Eight airmen were killed when a CV-22 assigned to Yokota Air Base in Japan crashed in November, sparking a fleetwide grounding and subsequent slow return to flight operations. And earlier this month, Senior Airman Roger Fortson was killed in his Florida home by a deputy from the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office.

Air Force Brig. Gen. Michael Conley has now been tapped to helm AFSOC and rise two ranks to the title of lieutenant general. Conley currently serves as AFSOC’s director of operations, according to the Pentagon announcement. 

Biden additionally nominated Maj. Gen. David Tabor to pin on a third star and take over as the Air Force’s next deputy chief of staff for plans and programs, a top resource manager for the service. That role is currently held by Lt. Gen. Richard Moore, who has helped craft the service’s budgets under caps imposed by Congress. Moore is planning to retire, according to an Air Force spokesperson. 

A number of other officials were also picked for new positions. Air Force Maj. Gen. John DeGoes has been tapped for a promotion to lieutenant general and to become the service’s next surgeon general. DeGoes is currently the deputy surgeon general. 

Maj. Gen. Thomas K. Hensley has also been nominated to command the Sixteenth Air Force at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, where he would be promoted to the rank of lieutenant general. The Sixteenth Air Force is tasked with waging information warfare, and Hensley is its incumbent deputy commander.