557th WW welcomes new commander

  • Published
  • By Paul Shirk
  • 55th Wing Public Affairs

The 557th Weather Wing held its change of command ceremony June 26, 2018, at Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska.

Col. Brian Pukall assumed command from outgoing commander Col. Steven Dickerson in a ceremony officiated by 12th Air Force Commander Lt. Gen. Mark D. Kelly.

Prior to taking command of the 557th WW, Pukall was the Chief of the Security Assistance Branch in the J-5 at U.S. Southern Command. He commanded the 31st Mission Support Group at Aviano Air Base, Italy, and the 21st Operational Weather Squadron at Kapaun Air Station, Germany. Pukall is also a foreign affairs officer and served as the U.S. Air Attaché to Mexico.

“Col. Brian Pukall, the son of an Air Force weatherman, has literally traveled the globe, through Europe and the Americas,” Kelly said, “so he brings a wide breadth of experience and professional exposure to the 557th WW.”

Kelly also spoke about the significance of the wing’s missions on Air Force operations.

“Every single thing that the Air Force does in terms of operations - relies on the accuracy of 557th WW forecasts,” Kelly said. “Few units in our service hold that much sway - retain that much relevance on the success or failure of our Air Force. So, to the Airmen of the 557th WW, your efforts do not go unnoticed and they surely do not go unappreciated. In fact, they are the lifeblood of United States Air Force lethality and survivability.”

Pukall last served as a commander of a weather unit almost ten years ago. From 2007 – 2009 he served as commander of the 21st OWS in Germany.

“It’s great to be in weather again,” Pukall said. “I’m humbled and honored to be given the opportunity to command a world-class organization like the 557th WW. There is nothing more motivating than leading Airmen, and the 557th has a one-of-a-kind mission to deliver global weather, space-environmental, and climatological services to the DOD anytime, anywhere in the world.”

Dickerson was previously the wing’s 1st Weather Group commander and was the second commander to lead the 557th WW since its transition from the Air Force Weather Agency in 2015. His next assignment will be at the Secretary of the Air Force’s Office of International Affairs. Dickerson was presented with the Legion of Merit in recognition of his accomplishments as commander.

“This wing is phenomenal not because anything I've done,” Dickerson said, “but because of what they do every single day for the United States Air Force. And so, thank you. It's been my honor and privilege to serve with you.”

Headquartered at Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska with 18 geographically-separated units around the world, the mission of the 557th WW is to exploit timely, accurate, and relevant weather information anytime and everywhere on the globe. The 557th WW is the Air Force’s only weather wing.