The Biden administration has selected Lt. Gen. B. Chance Saltzman to serve as the next chief of space operations. If confirmed by the Senate, Saltzman would succeed Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond as the Space Force’s senior-most military officer. Raymond plans to retire later this year.
Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall hailed Saltzman as the ideal successor to carry out policies set forth by Raymond, the service’s first chief of staff.
“I am certain that General Saltzman has the skill and the drive needed to build upon [Raymond’s] foundation, and if confirmed, I’m looking forward to the opportunity to work with him as the second chief of space operations,” Kendall said.
Saltzman would come into the new job from his current position as deputy chief of space operations for operations, cyber and nuclear. He received his Air Force commission in 1991, served as a Minuteman III launch officer, a satellite operator at the National Reconnaissance Officer, and chief of combat plans and later combat operations for the Joint Space Operations Center. He also held squadron-command positions at Vandenburg Space Force Base, California, and Buckley Space Force Base, Colorado, when the Air Force still held operational responsibility for these installations. Other leadership positions include stints as deputy commander of U.S. Air Forces Central Command and deputy Combined Force Air Component Commander, U.S. Central Command, Southwest Asia.