The California Air National Guard has announced it will expand from four to five Air Force wings when its 195th Wing becomes operational next month. With the addition of the 195th Wing, California will join New York as the states having the most Air National Guard wings.
“The formation of the 195th Wing gives a laser focus and clear direction to both California’s and the Air Force’s missions within the intel, space, cyber and Combat Communications communities,” said Col. Rick Hern, commander of the California Air National Guard’s 162nd Combat Communications Group. “It also expands our unit members’ opportunities to achieve personal and mission success.”
The Headquarters Air Force approved the re-designation and expansion of the 162nd Combat Communications Group to the 195th Wing on August. 6. The unit will assume the California Guard’s emerging cyber, space, combat communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions. The formation of the wing increases command and control by aligning the California Air National Guard’s non-flying units under one commander. It also increases efficiency by relieving the California Guard’s flying wings from finance, personnel and training responsibilities for non-flying units.
“In order to fulfill our state and federal missions, it’s critical we increase unity of effort and efficiency,” said Maj. Gen. David S. Baldwin, California’s Adjutant General. “This move will ensure we can more effectively and rapidly respond to the needs of our neighbors at home and allies abroad.”
Headquartered on Beale Air Force Base in Northern California, the 195th Wing will serve as home to approximately 800 California Guard airmen under the command of an Air Guard colonel. The 195th Wing’s subordinate units will span the length of the state.
A formal ceremony marking the creation of the new wing is tentatively scheduled for later in the year at Beale Air Force Base, after the unit becomes fully operational in September.