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Leadership changes for Pease, NHANG

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Tim Hayden
  • 157th Air Refueling Wing

In a three-part ceremony, the 157th Air Refueling Wing and the New Hampshire Air National Guard underwent a change in leadership, June 4.

Col. Nelson Perron became the commander of the wing, while Col. John Pogorek, outgoing wing commander, was promoted to brigadier general and accepted command of the New Hampshire Air National Guard. 

In a symbol of the transfer of command during the first portion of the ceremony, Pogorek passed the unit guidon to Perron.

“I couldn’t be happier to be turning the wing over to Nelson Perron,” said Pogorek. “He is the right person, at the right time, to take control of this wing.”

Perron began his military career in the Vermont Air National Guard in 1993 as a telecommunications specialist. In 2001, following the completion of his initial pilot training, Perron joined the NH Air Guard as a KC-135 pilot. Over the past two decades, Perron served in numerous roles, both as an aviator and an administrator, logging over 3,000 flying hours. Prior to assuming command for the wing, he served as the commander of the157th Operations Group.

"My pledge to you is that I will give 110% every day to these Airmen, because they deserve it," said Perron. “I will make sure that they are resourced properly and have what they need to be successful.”

Perron praised the wing’s accomplishments throughout the turbulent past few years and shared his vision for the future of the wing.

"Be ready, the call will come,” said Perron. “In the future we’ll be asked to do more and more.”

Following the change of command, Pogorek was promoted to the rank of brigadier general. His family participated in the ceremony, helping to pin his new start to his uniform.

The third segment of the ceremony saw the newly-promoted general accept command for his new role as Assistant Adjutant General for Air and commander of the NHANG from outgoing commander, Brig. Gen. Jed French.

“I’m so pleased you are succeeding me as commander,” said French of Pogorek. “You are being promoted because you are the consummate American Airman.”

In his last speech as wing commander, Pogorek thanked the men and women of the 157th Air Refueling Wing for their service and sacrifices.

“I can’t tell you enough how proud we all are of what our wing has accomplished,” he said.