Meet the commander: Col. Christopher Corley, 90th SFG

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Malcolm Mayfield
  • 90th Missile Wing Public Affairs
Col. Christopher Corley, 90th Security Forces Group commander, took command June 29, 2015. Throughout his career, he has always embraced the responsibilities of a leader.

Corley's first assignment was at Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota, as a flight commander for security forces personnel assigned to its missile complex.

"Right when I stepped into the door I was assigned a flight of approximately 50 defenders," Corley said. "I was told to get out there and lead them in the missile complex."

For his first assignment, he commanded just a fraction of the personnel compared to his current assignment. He went from commanding 50 to commanding 1,200 Defenders.

"After a challenging transition period [my first assignment] became a lot more enjoyable," Corley said. "At first it was very intimidating, trying to learn a new job and lead a diverse group of Defenders at the same time. This is my first group-level command, and it is similar to my first assignment --challenging, but extremely rewarding at the same time."

As a young leader, Corley focused on being personally and professionally the best he could be. He earned a Master of Science, from Central Michigan University, while stationed at Grand Forks.

Corley has had 14 assignments, including his current position as the 90th SFG commander, since he commissioned into the Air Force in December, 1992, from Texas A&M University.

As a military child, he was encouraged by his father, a Vietnam veteran, to serve in the military.

"He made me promise that I would do one four-year term, and next thing you know, here I am, 22 years later," the proud son said. "He always reinforced the importance of service and how each young man or women should give back a little to their country and spend some time in the uniform."

Now being a father himself, Corley receives support from his wife Julie of 18 years and his three children, Jacob, Chrystal, and Danielle, he said.

"My father instilled the spirit of patriotism in me," Corley said. "I appreciate the push from my father, and I've tried to instill [that spirit] in my children as well."

Moving to Warren with his family was a welcomed change for Corley.

"This is my first time at F.E. Warren and I could not be more delighted to be here," he said.

Corley said he enjoyed hunting and the outdoors, making Warren a great location to enjoy his hobbies.

"Those are things I do that kind of help me manage the stress level and stay fully energized," he said. "This was a very pleasant surprise for us to get matched to this assignment. I couldn't be more excited to be the commander of the largest security forces group in the Air Force."

As a father, he pushes his children to succeed and as the 90th SFG commander, he strives to know his Airmen and lead them to greater heights, he said.

"I'm a believer in getting out and about and interacting with our Airmen," he said. "Recently we began a commander duty position certification effort to increase our opportunities to serve with our Defenders.  This program will enable us to get out there and work alongside them."

Corley and his squadron commanders will use this interaction to help understand their Airmen to a greater extent.

"It will allow us to get to know them better and it will allow them to know us better," he said.

Corley said the duty position certification program is designed to help him and his squadron commanders accomplish their mission in support of nuclear deterrence more effectively.

Whether it is security support, law enforcement or missile defense, knowing the issues of the security forces Airmen can lead to increased effectiveness.

"I'm very focused on the mission," Corley said. "At the end of the day, we absolutely must perform the mission well."