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Senate confirms Gorenc as next USAFE commander

Lt. Gen. Frank Gorenc, right, salutes Gen. Mark A. Welsh III, at the time the U.S. Air Forces in Europe commander, after being presented the distinguished service medal as he relinquished command of the Third Air Force at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, March 30, 2012. The U.S. Senate has confirmed Gorenc as the next commander, U.S. Air Forces Europe-U.S. Air Forces Africa. Welsh is now the Air Force chief of staff.

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — The U.S. Senate has confirmed Lt. Gen. Frank Gorenc as the next commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe — Air Forces Africa, command officials announced Tuesday.

Gorenc will also receive a fourth star before the USAFE-AFAFRICA change-of-command ceremony, which is scheduled for Aug. 2, a spokesman said.

“I am pleased and humbled to receive the Senate confirmation,” Gorenc said in a statement. “I have roots in Europe and as an airman have been fortunate enough to spend three tours there, most recently as the commander of 3rd Air Force.”

“I’m proud to again serve with the dedicated men and women who perform the mission in this important theater.”

Gorenc will assume command from Lt. Gen. Noel T. “Tom” Jones, the interim commander of USAFE-AFAFRICA. Jones stepped in for former USAFE-AFAFRICA commander, Gen. Philip Breedlove, who in May became the 16th commander of U.S. European Command and the top officer in charge of NATO forces in Europe.

Gorenc was born in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and has been the Air Force’s assistant vice chief of staff since April 2012. Prior to his current assignment in Washington, D.C., Gorenc commanded the Third Air Force at Ramstein Air Base for 2 ½ years.

A 1979 distinguished graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, Gorenc is a command pilot with more than 4,500 hours, primarily in the F-15C.

news@stripes.com

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