EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE —Col. Matthew Higer assumed command of the 412th Test Wing from Brig. Gen. E. John Teichert during a change of command ceremony at Edwards Air Force Base, Feb. 5.
The 412th Test Wing plans, conducts, analyzes, and reports on all flight and ground testing of aircraft, weapons systems, software and components as well as modeling and simulation for the U.S. Air Force. There are three core components for this mission: flying operations, maintenance, and engineering. Through a maintenance group of over 2,000 people and an operations group of 3,000, the test wing maintains and flies an average of 90 aircraft with upwards of 30 different aircraft designs and performs over 7,400 missions (over 1,900 test missions) on an annual basis.
Maj. Gen. Christopher Azzano, Air Force Test Center Commander, officiated the ceremony at Hangar 1600 in front of family members, friends and members of Team Edwards.
“Today, we’re saying farewell to the Teicherts…Brig. Gen. Teichert was recently selected as the next defense attaché to Iraq, where he will be the senior military adviser to the U.S. ambassador,” Azzano said. “He will oversee security cooperation and assistance in the region, and there is no better leader to help protect U.S. interests in this volatile time.”
During his remarks, Teichert thanked his family, colleagues and Team Edwards, who he credits for letting him have a successful tenure as commander, which began in July, 2018.
“This organization does so much to impact our nation, and to truly live up to the needs of our National Defense Strategy, as we serve together here for the warfighter at the Center of the Aerospace Testing Universe,” Teichert said. “…Our true national treasure are our amazing Airmen and their families, and our mission partners, and our community partners. You are a national treasure, and you are the Center of the Aerospace Testing Universe.”
Higer is not new to Edwards AFB and most recently served as former Air Force Test Pilot School Commandant. He assumes command of a Wing of more than 8,000 personnel in the developmental test and evaluation of the F-35, KC-46, F-22, F-16, B-1, B-2, B-52, C-17, C-130, KC-135, Global Hawk, joint remotely piloted aircraft and emerging technologies. Additionally, Col. Higer is now the installation commander responsible for operating the base and supporting more than 11,000 active duty, reserve, and civil service and defense contractors at Edwards, the second largest base in the Air Force.
“It is also an honor to be selected to command the Wing that has the sacred American mission of teaching test fundamentals, like world-class risk management and adaptive test solutions to the next generation of test professionals,” Higer said. “To the members of the 412th Test Wing…it is truly an honor to be your commander. Our nation has never needed us more, and I am beyond description excited to be your biggest fan and supporter.”