Colonel Thomas R. Ste. Marie is the is the 45th Space Wing Vice Commander at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. He is responsible for the processing and launching of U.S. government and commercial satellites from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. He serves as a Launch Decision Authority with final approval for launches on the Eastern Range, a 15-million-square-mile area which supports an average of 20 launches per year aboard various launch vehicles. He leads more than 13,000 military, DOD civilian and contractor personnel assigned to operating locations in Florida, Ascension, and Airmen deployed worldwide in support of contingency operations overseas.
Colonel Ste. Marie received his commission through the United States Air Force Academy in 1996. He has since held a variety of command, staff and operations postions across the space and intelligence communities. Some of these positions include: Deputy Director, National Recconnaisance Office of Space Launch, Los Angeles AFB, Calif.; Deputy Commander, 45th Operations Group, Patrick AFB, Fla.; Commander, 2d Space Operations Squadron, Schriever AFB, Colo.; Director of Operations, 1st Range Operations Squadron, Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla.; Director of Missions and Chief, Special Studies, National Reconnaisance Office ADF-East. Colonel Ste. Marie is a distinguished graduate of the Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala., by correspondence; the National Defense Intelligence College and Embry-Riddle University, Fla.
1996 Bachelor of Science, Management, U.S. Air Force Academy, CO
2006 Master of Science, Aerospace Studies, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, FL
2009 Master of Arts, Strategic Intelligence, National Intelligence University, Washington D.C.
1. August 1996 – November 1996 - Assistant Director of Academic Computing, U.S. Air Force Academy, CO
2. November 1996 – May 1997 - Student, Undergraduate Space and Missile Training and Global Positioning System Initial Qualification Training, Vandenberg AFB, CA
3. May 1997 – June 1999 - Payload System Operator and Navigation Analyst, 2nd Space Operations Squadron, Schriever AFB, CO
4. June 1999 – June 2002 - Lead Payload Instructor and Courseware Developer, 534th Training Squadron, Vandenberg AFB, CA
5. June 2002 – March 2004 - Chief of Training and Flight Commander, 1st Space Launch Squadron, Cape Canaveral AFS, FL
6. March 2004 – June 2005 - Executive Officer, 45th Operations Group, Patrick AFB, FL
7. June 2005 – August 2008 – Assistant Director of Operations, Chief Special Studies and Director of Missions, ADF-E, National Reconnaissance Office
8. August 2008 – August 2009 - Student, National Defense Intelligence College, Bolling AFB, Washington D.C.
9. August 2009 – March 2011 - Chief, Space Situational Awareness, and Executive Officer, Directorate of Cyber & Space, HQ USAF, Pentagon, Washington D.C.
10. May 2011 – June 2012 - Director of Operations, 1st Range Operations Squadron, Cape Canaveral AFS, FL
11. June 2012 –July 2014 - Commander, 2d Space Operations Squadron, Schriever Air Force Base, CO
12. July 2014 – July 2017 - Deputy Commander, 45th Operations Group, Cape Canaveral AFS, FL
13. August 2017 – June 2018 - Deputy Commander, Office of Space Launch, National Reconnaissance Office, Los Angeles, CA
14. June 2018- Present - Vice Commander, 45th Space Wing, Patrick AFB, FL
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
2009 National Defense Intelligence College Michael D. Kuszewski Award
Defense Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Air Force Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf cluster
Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters
Defense Achievement Medal
Air Force Achievement Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant May 1996
First Lieutenant May 1998
Captain May 2000
Major May 2006
Lieutenant Colonel Jun 2011
Colonel Aug 2017