Chief Master Sgt. Erica K. Rhea is the Command Chief, 157th Air Refueling Wing, Pease Air National Guard Base, New Hampshire. She advises the Commander on all matters concerning readiness and proper utilization, morale and welfare of over 1,100 enlisted Airmen while they navigate the fielding of the Air Force’s newest weapons system, the KC-46 Pegasus. Chief Rhea is the 8th Command Chief of the 157th Air Refueling Wing.
Chief Rhea entered the Air Force in 1994. Her background includes various duties in the aircraft maintenance career field. She has deep Total Force roots having served alongside the Air National Guard during many deployments and was embedded with the Hawaii Air National Guard for eight years. Chief Rhea transitioned to the New Hampshire Air National Guard Nov.2, 2019 and served as the 157th Command and Control Chief. She has deployed to Qatar, Turkey, Greece and Spain in support of many Operations to include Desert Fox, Southern and Northern Watch, Iraqi and Enduring Freedom, Resolute Support, Freedom’s Sentinel and Inherent Resolve.
Prior to her transition to the New Hampshire Air National Guard, Chief Rhea served as Chief Enlisted Manager of the 64th Air Refueling Squadron, an Active Associate ‘mini-Wing” embedded in the 157th Air Refueling Wing. Prior to that, she was the Chief Enlisted Manager of the 379th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar.
1998 Airman Leadership School, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb.
2002 Associate of Aerospace Maintenance Technology, Community College of the Air Force, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2002 Noncommissioned Officer Academy, Kapaun AS, Kaiserslautern, Germany
2005 Bachelor of Professional Aeronautics, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Cum Laude, Daytona Beach, Flori.
2009 Senior Enlisted Joint Professional Military Education, National Defense University, Washington, D.C.
2010 Master of General Administrative Management, Central Michigan University
2012 Senior Noncommissioned Officer Academy, Maxwell Air Force Base, Gunter Annex, Ala.
2014 Professional Manager Certification, Community College of the Air Force, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2015 Advanced Maintenance and Munitions Operations School, Advanced Maintenance Superintendent Course
2018 Chief Leadership Course, Maxwell AFB, Gunter Annex, Ala.
2020 Air National Guard Command Chief Course via Virtual Medium, Lackland AFB, San Antonio, Texas
1. July 1994 – July 2000, KC/RC/EC/OC/WC-135R/U/V/W/S/T Isochronal Inspector and Repair & Reclamation Craftsman, 55th Maintenance Squadron, Offutt AFB, Neb.
2. August 2000 – August 2005, RC-135U/V/W/S Crew Chief, 95th Reconnaissance Squadron, Royal Air Force Station, Mildenhall, U.K.
3. September 2005 – October 2006, C-17, C-5, KC-10 Production Expeditor, 735th Air Mobility Squadron, Hickam AFB, Hawaii
4. October 2006 – August 2010, Executive Non-Commissioned Officer, Production Expeditor and Production Superintendent, 319th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Grand Forks AFB, N.D.
5. September 2010 – January 2012, C-17, C-5, KC-10 Production Superintendent and Aircraft Maintenance Unit Noncommissioned Officer in Charge, 735th Air Mobility Squadron, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
6. January 2012 – May 2013, KC-135 Aircraft Maintenance Unit Superintendent, 15th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
7. May 2013 – January 2016, C-17 Quality Assurance Superintendent, 15th Maintenance Group, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
8. January 2016 – April 2017, Assistant Squadron Superintendent, 15th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
9. April 2017 – April 2018, Chief Enlisted Manager, 379th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Al Udeid Air Base,Qatar
10. April 2018 – November 2019, Chief Enlisted Manager, 64th Air Refueling Squadron, Pease Air National Guard Base, N.H.
11. November 2019 – May 2020, Command and Control Chief, 157th Air Refueling Wing, Pease ANGB, N.H.
12. June 2020 – Present, Command Chief, 157th Air Refueling Wing, Pease ANGB, N.H.
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Nuclear Deterrence Operations Service Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Chief Master Sergeant, Feb. 1, 2017
(Current as of July 2020)