AFA’s Wright to Retire in 2024; Board Launches Search for Successor
December 11, 2023
ARLINGTON, Va. — Lt. Gen. Bruce “Orville” Wright, USAF (Ret.), will retire as President & CEO of the Air & Space Forces Association in 2024, after five years as the Association’s president. AFA’s Board of Directors has formed a search committee to identify a successor.
“These last five years have been the honor of a lifetime and have raced by at lightning speed,” Wright said. “I’ve cherished the opportunity to work with AFA’s great volunteer leaders, to support the outstanding military and civilian leaders in our Department of the Air Force, and to advocate on behalf of so many wonderful and dedicated Airmen, Guardians, and Family members. Their enduring commitment to our nation inspires me every day. I look forward to a smooth transition to new leadership and to witnessing the next great chapter in AFA’s storied history.”
Wright’s tenure was historic in many ways. He assumed AFA’s presidency in 2019 and led the Association through a period of growth, expansion, and change, including navigating the challenges of COVID-19. Wright presided over the rebranding of the Association, as its mission expanded from exclusive focus on the U.S. Air Force to fully embrace the new U.S. Space Force, as well. During his tenure, revenues increased by about one-third, individual membership grew by 15 percent, and corporate memberships doubled. AFA’s Air & Space Forces Magazine grew its digital traffic more than 10-fold, and the Association introduced a range of new initiatives: AFA’s United Forces & Families (F2) task force, Air & Space Warfighters in Action interview series, the Doolittle Leadership Center’s “Lead, Develop, Care” leadership training program, and the Mitchell Institute’s Aerospace Advantage podcast, among others. Wright also led a five-year initiative to relocate the AFA headquarters to the new AFA Operations Center and headquarters function near the Pentagon.
“Orville Wright will leave big shoes to fill,” said AFA Board Chair Bernie Skoch. “His energy, drive, and outreach are exemplary and were key elements in AFA’s successes over these past five years. We have an outstanding and experienced search committee hard at work on the task of identifying candidates to become AFA’s next President & CEO, and I am confident that we will find exactly the right person for the next stage in AFA’s evolution.”
The Air & Space Forces Association is an independent, non-profit 501(c)3 association dedicated to advocating for investment and support for the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force, and for supporting Airmen, Guardians, and their Families. Founded in 1946, AFA is the single largest entity of its kind focused on air and space power. With more than 113,000 members and 200 chapters spread around the world, our mission is to promote dominant U.S. Air and Space Forces as the foundation of a strong National Defense; to honor and support Airmen, Guardians, and their Families; and to remember and respect the enduring heritage of the Air and Space Forces.