Col Katherine A.E. Lilly is the Commander for the 6th Maintenance Group, 6th Air Refueling Wing, MacDill Air Force Base, Florida. She is responsible for the management of aircraft and munitions maintenance for the wing and its tenant units. Col. Lilly oversees 700 personnel in the generation, sustainment, and repair of 24 KC-135R/T Stratotanker aircraft supporting worldwide aerial refueling missions for the United States and allied forces, as well as providing direct support to combatant commanders.
Colonel Lilly graduated in 1997 from Oregon State University with a degree in Business Administration, receiving her commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps. During her career as an aircraft maintenance officer, she was assigned to four separate major commands (Air Combat Command, Air Force Materiel Command, Air Mobility Command, and Pacific Air Forces), supporting a variety of aircraft across both the fixed and rotary wing spectrum. Colonel Lilly served as a Squadron Commander three times, to include an Air Advisor Squadron in Shindand, Afghanistan, and was an Executive Officer at the Headquarters, Major Command and Group-level.
1997 Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, Oregon State University, Corvallis
2002 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2007 Masters of Arts Degree in Leadership, American Military University, Va.
2010 Master of Military Operational Art and Science Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
2013 Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence
2019 International Higher Command Seminar, Berlin, Germany
1. July 1997 - April 1999, Maintenance and Munitions Flight Commander, 366th Equipment Maintenance Squadron, Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho2.April 1999 – 2. April 1999 – May 2000, F-16 Sortie Support and Sortie Generation Flight Commander, 389th Fighter Squadron, Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho
3. June 2000 – September 2002, F-22 Operational Test and Evaluation Officer, 31st Test and Evaluation Squadron, Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
4. September 2002 – April 2003, Executive Officer, 412th Maintenance Group, Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
5. April 2003 – July 2004, Fabrication Flight Commander, 436th Equipment Maintenance Squadron, Dover Air Force Base, Del.
6. July 2004 – October 2005, C-5 Aircraft Maintenance Unit Flight Commander, 436th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Dover Air Force Base, Del.
7. October 2005 – January 2006, C-17 Maintenance Operation Officer, 436th Airlift Wing, Dover Air Force Base, Del.
8. January 2006 – July 2007, Chief, Maintenance Management and Requirements Section, Directorate of Logistics, Headquarters Pacific Air Forces, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii
9. July 2007 – July 2008, Executive Officer for Director of Logistics, Headquarters Pacific Air Forces, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii
10. July 2008- August 2009, Commander, 15th Maintenance Squadron, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii
11. August 2009 – June 2010, Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
12. June 2010 – November 2012, Commander, 374th Maintenance Squadron, Yokota Air Force Base, Japan
13. November 2012 – November 2013, Commander, 802nd Air Expeditionary Advisory Squadron, Shindand Air Base, Afghanistan
14. November 2013 – June 2013, Chief, Weapons Systems Support Branch, Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Planning and Programs, Headquarters, U.S. Air Force, Washington D.C.
15. June 2014 – June 2015, Executive Officer for the Director of Strategic Plans, Deputy Chief of Staff Strategic Plans and Requirements, Headquarters, U.S. Air Force, Washington D.C.
16. June 2015 – June 2016, Deputy Logistics Panel Chair, Deputy Chief of Staff of Logistics, Engineering and Force Protection, Headquarters, U.S. Air Force, Washington D.C.
17. July 2016 – July 2018, Deputy Group Commander, 521st Air Mobility Operations Group, Rota Naval Station Spain
18. August 2018 – May 2020, Chief, Europe and NATO Division, Office of the Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for International Affairs, Headquarters US Air Force, Washington D.C.
19. June 2020 – September 2022, Senior Military to the Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for International Affairs, Headquarters Department of the Air Force, Washington D.C.
20. September 2022 – July 2023, Director of Staff to the Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for International Affairs, Headquarters Department of the Air Force, Washington D.C
20. July 2023 – Present, 6th Air Refueling Wing Maintenance Group Commander, MacDill Air Force Base, Florida
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters Joint Air Force Commendation Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Meritorious Unit Award
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with five oak leaf clusters
Afghanistan Campaign Medal with one campaign star
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant June 14, 1997
First Lieutenant June 1, 1999
Captain June 1, 2001
Major April 1, 2007
Lieutenant Colonel July 1, 2012
Colonel November 1, 2018
(Current as of July 2023)