88th Air Base Wing to welcome new vice commander

  • Published
  • By Vince Little
  • 88th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio – Effective June 26, Col. Travis Pond will assume the role of 88th Air Base Wing vice commander.

Born and raised in nearby Washington Court House, Pond joins the command team from Air Force Materiel Command headquarters at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, where he’s served as deputy director of contracting since July 2019.

He replaces Col. Charles Barkhurst, who’s leaving for Ramstein Air Base, Germany, to take over as financial management and comptroller director for U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa.

“I am humbled and extremely excited to join the leadership team for the 88th Air Base Wing,” Pond said. “As an Ohio native, I’m very aware of the importance of Wright-Patterson AFB to the state of Ohio, the city of Dayton and surrounding areas. Our partnership with the community is extremely important, and I look forward to becoming a part of that partnership and engagement to improve the community and support the nearly 35,000 men and women that make ‘Fly-Fight-Win’ possible for the United States Air Force.”

Pond, commissioned in 1999 through the Air Force ROTC program at Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky, has commanded the 509th Contracting Squadron at Whiteman AFB, Missouri, and Defense Contract Management Agency in Seattle. He’s been a contracting officer at an operational squadron, major weapons center and the National Reconnaissance Office.

He has deployed to Ali Al Salem Air Base, Kuwait; Kandahar, Afghanistan; and Baghdad.

Pond says his leadership philosophy and approach are simple.

“People first, mission always,” he said. “I strive each day to make people’s jobs easier. Taking care of our people and their families is priority No. 1. Every ‘Big-A’ Airman plays an important role in the success of the 88th and the success of the U.S. Air Force.”

As host unit for AFMC, multiple operational centers and numerous tenant organizations, 88 ABW and its mission support is “critical to our nation’s defense,” he added.

“I can think of no higher honor than to be a part of helping lead the Mighty 88th, where we dominate the dirty work,” Pond said. “My goal is to provide the leadership support to enable the continued success of the 88th Air Base Wing. My family and I are here to serve, honored and excited to join this team.”