Col. David J. Berkland is the Commander, 354th Fighter Wing, Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. He is responsible for delivering fifth generation combat airpower to U.S. Indo-Pacific Command. He also provides high-end, multi-domain combat training to U.S. and international partners via RED FLAG-Alaska, a premier multinational large-force training exercise.
Col. Berkland was commissioned in 1998 from Officer Training School after graduating from Augustana University. He has performed duties as an F-16 instructor pilot and weapons officer, and flew combat sorties in Operations SOUTHERN WATCH, NORTHERN WATCH, IRAQI FREEDOM, and FREEDOM’S SENTINEL. He has commanded at squadron and group levels, and instructed at the USAF Weapons School. He completed staff tours on the Air Staff as Chief of Air Superiority Weapons Requirements, and on the Joint Staff as the Secretary of Defense Orders Book Briefer. Prior to his current position, Col. Berkland commanded the 405th Air Expeditionary Group at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.
Col. Berkland is a command pilot with more than 3,400 flying hours, including over 900 combat hours.
1997 Bachelor of Arts in Government, Augustana University, Sioux Falls, S.D.
2003 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2005 U.S. Air Force Weapons School, Nellis AFB, Nev.
2007 Air Command and Staff College, by correspondence
2009 Master of Arts in Military Studies, American Military University, W. Va.
2011 Master of Science in Strategic Intelligence, National Intelligence University, Washington, D.C.
2012 Air War College, by correspondence
2017 Master of Arts in National Security Strategy, National War College, Washington, D.C.
1. August 1998—September 1999, Student, Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training, Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas
2. February 1999—September 2000, Student, F-16 training, 309th Fighter Squadron, Luke AFB, Ariz.
3. November 2000—September 2003, Instructor Pilot, 78th Fighter Squadron, Shaw AFB, S.C.
4. September 2003—December 2004, Flight Commander and Examiner, 35th Fighter Squadron, Kunsan AB, South Korea
5. January 2005—June 2005, Student, 16th Weapons Squadron, U.S. Air Force Weapons School, Nellis AFB, Nev.
6. June 2005—January 2007, Weapons Officer, 4th Fighter Squadron, Hill AFB, Utah
7. January 2007—September 2007, Weapons Officer, 388th Fighter Wing, Hill AFB, Utah
8. September 2007—July 2010, Flight Commander, Assistant Director of Operations, Deployed Wing Weapons Officer (332nd Air Expeditionary Wing, Balad AB, Iraq), 16th Weapons Squadron, U.S. Air Force Weapons School, Nellis AFB, Nev.
9. August 2010—July 2011, Student, National Intelligence University, Washington, D.C.
10. July 2011—October 2012, Chief, Air Superiority Weapons Requirements, Headquarters Air Force, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va.
11. October 2012—October 2013, Director of Operations, 52nd Operations Support Squadron, Spangdahlem AB, Germany
12. October 2013—January 2014, Director of Operations, 480th Fighter Squadron, Spangdahlem AB, Germany
13. January 2014—January 2016, Commander, 480th Fighter Squadron, Spangdahlem AB, Germany
14. July 2016—June 2017, Student, National War College, Fort Lesley McNair, Washington, D.C.
15. July 2017—July 2019, Secretary of Defense Orders Book Briefer, J-35, Joint Staff, the Pentagon, Arlington, Va.
16. July 2019—June 2020, Commander, 405th Air Expeditionary Group, Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan
17. August 2020—Present, Commander, 354th Fighter Wing, Eielson AFB, Alaska
Rating: command pilot
Flight hours: more than 3,400, including 900 combat hours
Aircraft flown: F-16 and F-35
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Defense Superior Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Air Medal with nine oak leaf clusters
Aerial Achievement Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Force Combat Action Medal
Air Force Gallant Unit Citation
2005 U.S. Air Force Chennault Award Winner
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant June 12, 1998
First Lieutenant June 12, 2000
Captain June 12, 2002
Major Mar. 1, 2008
Lieutenant Colonel July 1, 2013
Colonel July 1, 2018
(Current as of August 2020)