Gen. Hyten is this year's NDIA Eisenhower recipient

Retired Air Force Gen. John Hyten

ARLINGTON, VA – Retired Air Force Gen. John Hyten, whose career includes service as the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, is the 2022 recipient of NDIA’s Dwight D. Eisenhower Award, the National Defense Industrial Association announces Monday, March 28.

“General Hyten’s commitment and leadership to our national security and dedication to our men and women in uniform is unmatched,” said NDIA Chairman Maj. Gen. Arnold Punaro. “His service in the military has made our nation more secure, and his patriotism and contributions will inspire future leaders for years to come. I congratulate my colleague-in-arms for achieving this high honor.”

NDIA chose Hyten for his lifelong leadership, commitment to our national security, dedication to the well-being of our service men and women and their families, and deep appreciation of the importance of our defense industrial base, organization officials said.

Hyten attended Harvard on an Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps scholarship, graduated in 1981 with a bachelor’s degree in engineering and applied sciences, and was commissioned a second lieutenant. The general’s service began in engineering and transitioned into a 40-year career after he became immersed in space and missile defense acquisition and operations. A respected space operator who deployed to Southwest Asia as director of Space Forces for operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom in 2006, Hyten commanded the 595th Space Group, the 50th Space Wing, and Air Force Space Command prior to overseeing U.S. nuclear forces as the commander of Strategic Command from 2016 to 2019. In that position, Hyten relentlessly advocated for speed in modernizing our nuclear arsenal.

The Senate confirmed Hyten in November 2019 as Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a position he held until his retirement in November 2021. Hyten’s service was marked by his continued fight for speed and innovation against peer competitors as he helped lead the nation’s top military planners and advisers. He actively advocated against inertia and worked to overcome bureaucratic barriers preventing the rapid delivery of innovative capabilities to warfighters. He used his deep expertise in space and strategic systems to advocate for faster deployment of a resilient space architecture and the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent system. Hyten continues to serve our nation as a member of a new 12-person commission mandated by the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act that is tasked with conducting a review of U.S. nuclear policies and our strategic posture.

The Eisenhower Award is NDIA’s most prestigious honor, recognizing outstanding leadership and strategic impact at the highest levels of national security that reflect the contributions of President Dwight Eisenhower. Hyten will receive the award during a dinner in his honor Wednesday, April 13, at the Ritz-Carlton in Pentagon City, Arlington, Virginia.

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