VDT 23rd

Paul Leavy/The Valdosta Daily Times Colonel Kenneth Todorov, commander of the 23rd Wing at Moody Air Force Base, in his office.

VALDOSTA — On May 11, Col. Kenneth E. Todorov became the 23rd Wing commander at Moody Air Force Base. Having already been stationed at Moody for the past few years, the colonel is no stranger within the military and civilian community.

Todorov has been in the military for 22 years. As he prepares to embark on a new mission, here’s a chance to get to know him better.

The colonel graduated in 1985 from Siena College in New York with a bachelor’s degree in history and Russian studies, and was commissioned through the Reserve Officer Training Corps program at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He is a command pilot with more than 3,800 flight hours. He has held a number of flying and staff positions, including tours as an exchange officer with the U.S. Navy. He has had temporary assignments to the U.S. State Department and National Security Council as operations officer, squadron commander, and division officer on the Joint Staff at the Pentagon (J-3).

His education includes Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama in 1987; master’s degree in business administration, National University, San Diego, Calif., in 1993; College of Naval Command and Staff, Newport, R.I. (distinguished graduate) in 1998; master’s degree in national security and strategic studies, Naval War College, Newport, R.I., in 1998; Armed Forces Staff College, Naval Station Norfolk, Va., in 2000; Air War College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., in 2005; master’s degree in strategic studies, Air War College, Maxwell AFB, (academic distinction) in 2005.

Todorov’s career also includes 14 assignments ranging from October 1985 until the present. Among the aircraft Todorov is versed in flying are TH-55, UH-1H, CH-3E, HH-3E, UH-60L, SH-60F, HH-60H, MH-60G, HH-60G, HC-130, MI-8 and MI-24s.

Other achievements include being a Distinguished Graduate College of Naval Command and Staff, 2000 Division Action Officer of the Year, J-3, The Joint Staff, and Academic Distinction Air War College.

Todorov’s other dates of promotion include becoming a second lieutenant on May 16, 1985; first lieutenant on Aug. 1, 1987; captain on Aug. 1, 1989; major on June 1, 1997; lieutenant colonel on Apr. 1, 2001; and colonel on Aug. 1, 2005.

Todorov responded to a series of questions that will enable the community to learn more about his expectations and hopes for Moody Air Force Base.

Q: Since being at Moody, what changes have you seen that you would like to continue?

A: It’s imperative that we see the wing through the changes mandated by BRAC. In the coming months, we’ll be focusing on bedding down the 23rd Fighter Group (currently at Pope AFB, N.C.). We’ve already got airmen arriving, and the first A-10s will be here in August. It’s important that we take care of our airmen and their families so that they’re ready to hit the ground running.

Q: Overall, as the new 23rd Wing Commander, what do you hope to accomplish at Moody?

A: I’ve asked our airmen to focus on three basic things: developing and growing future leaders; always being prepared to deploy; and always be ready to fight and win our nation’s wars. I have the highest expectations for all of the great men and women at Moody — they’re the most talented and dedicated group I’ve ever been associated with, and I have no doubt that they will continue to succeed. An important facet of making it all happen is that our people have to know the families they leave behind are being taken care of. The care and generosity the neighboring communities show Moody people goes a long way in doing that. We also make sure our support agencies are doing everything they can to help our families.

Recognizing the importance of the legacy we were handed when we took the name of the Flying Tigers is also very important to me. I want all of our airmen to know about that legacy and how they fit into the mission that will carry that legacy into the future. It’s very important and also something I want our community to be a part of as well.

Q: How do you plan to work with the community surrounding Moody AFB?

A: Both the working and support relationship between Moody and the neighboring counties and cities is absolutely amazing and recognized throughout the Air Force. The Air Force chief of staff often refers many community leaders to our relationship as the benchmark. Aside from all of the caring and helpful support the community shows for the uniformed men and women here, the base and neighboring communities have a great working relationship which include multiple mutual support agreements. The people of South Georgia make our airmen better.

Q: Are there any special programs that you would like to bring to Moody or any possible new programs to implement at Moody?

A: We’re the keepers of some of the most storied heritage in the entire U.S. Air Force. The Flying Tigers, Jolly Green Giants, Combat Kings and pararescuemen story is simply amazing. I’m working with our base engineers to develop plans for a brand new 23rd Wing Heritage Center to help preserve our legacy and to showcase the rich tradition of this wing to our airmen and to the public. We’re very excited about the concept, and it’s something that I hope to tell South Georgia more about in the coming months.

Q: How do you think being named wing commander has affected or will affect your family?

A: My family is very excited about this assignment. We love South Georgia. Our children go to school in Valdosta, we’ve made some great friends here, and Lynn and I are looking forward to being part of this community for the next several years. Really, there’s no place I’d rather be a wing commander.

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