- The Washington Times - Friday, May 13, 2016

Air Force Gen. Lori J. Robinson made history Friday by becoming the first female combatant commander.

A ceremony was held in Colorado to mark the transfer of power from outgoing Adm. William Gortney to the four-star general. North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), and U.S. Northern Command in Colorado will both answer to Gen. Robinson.

“The world is more dangerous and North America is increasingly more vulnerable,” Gen. Robinson said from a Peterson Air Force Base hangar after taking command, Stars and Stripes reported. “I accept the watch.”

Gen. Robinson, who entered the military in 1982 through an ROTC program at the University of New Hampshire, went on to thank her family and fellow airmen for their support.

Some of her accomplishments include:

  • Air-battle manager for the E-3 Sentry (AWACS).
  • Vice commander of the 405th Air Expeditionary Wing in 2003 during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
  • Commander of the 17th Training Wing at Goodfellow Air Force Base in San Angelo, Texas.
  • Deputy commander for U.S. Air Forces Central Command in 2013.
  • Vice commander of Air Combat Command in 2014.

“She has a remarkable, complete set of proven experience,” Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said at the ceremony, The Associated Press reported. “These abilities will serve our nation well.”

Gen. Robinson’s husband, David, is a retired two-star general. Her daughter, 2nd Lt. Taryn Ashley Robinson, died in a 2006 pilot-training crash after graduating from the Air Force Academy. She was 22 years old.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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