Retired May 1, 1989.
Brigadier General Maralin K. Coffinger is director of personnel plans, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Personnel, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
She is responsible for all aspects of personnel planning and policy to assure the Air Force of the quantity and quality of trained, motivated people necessary to meet its mission in either peace or war.
General Coffinger was born in 1935 in Ogden, Iowa, and graduated from Riverside (Calif.) Polytechnic High School. She earned a bachelor of arts degree in 1957 and a master's in 1962, both in education, from Arizona State University. The general completed Squadron Officer School in 1965, Industrial College of the Armed Forces in 1972, Armed Forces Staff College in 1973, Air War College in 1976 and the National War College in 1977. General Coffinger is a 1985 graduate of the Capstone Course, Department of Defense Institute of Higher Defense Studies, Fort Lesley J. McNair.
The general entered the Air Force in June 1963 with a commission as a second lieutenant through Officer Training School. Her initial assignment was to Keesler Air Force Base, Miss., first as chief, personnel data control, and later as chief, Consolidated Base Personnel Office.
In October 1966 the general was assigned to Headquarters Mediterranean Communications Region, TUSLOG Detachment 170, at Ankara, Turkey, where she served as chief, Quality Control Branch, and, later, chief, Career Control (Personnel) Branch. She returned to the United States in April 1968 and was assigned as chief, Personnel Data Systems Branch, Headquarters Military Airlift Command, Scott Air Force Base, Ill.
From March 1971 to August 1972 General Coffinger served in Southeast Asia as personnel data systems and women's armed forces advisor with Detachment 10, Air Force Advisory Group, Tan Son Nhut Air Base, Republic of Vietnam. Upon her return from Vietnam, she attended the Armed Forces Staff College, graduating in January 1973. General Coffinger then was assigned to Air Force headquarters. While there she served as chief of officer procurement programs, Directorate of Personnel Programs, and in July 1975 became deputy director, Women in the Air Force.
After graduating from the National War College in July 1977, General Coffinger was assigned to the 21st Air Base Group, Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska, as deputy base commander. She took command of the base in June 1979. The general transferred to Norton Air Force Base, Calif., in August 1979, as deputy base commander of the 63rd Air Base Group and in May 1980 became base commander.
In August 1982 she was selected as the Air Force representative on the Fifth Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation, Office of the Secretary of Defense, Washington, D.C., and served as chairman of the Special and Incentive Pays Committee. She was assigned as deputy director, personnel programs, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Manpower and Personnel, at Air Force headquarters from January 1984 to October 1985. The general then served as a command director with North American Aerospace Defense Command combat operations, Cheyenne Mountain Complex, Colo. She assumed her present duties in December 1986.
Her military decorations and awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with "V" device and two oak leaf clusters, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with four service stars, Air Force Longevity Service Award Ribbon with four oak leaf clusters, Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces Honor Medal First Class and the Republic of Vietnam Air Service Medal Honor Class. General Coffinger also wears the Space Badge.
She was selected as one of the Outstanding Young Women of America in 1968 and Military Airlift Command Outstanding Junior Personnel Manager for the year 1970. In 1981 the general was named to Who's Who of American Women and was presented the Alumni Achievement Award for professional excellence by Arizona State University. In 1982 General Coffinger received the California Air Force Association Meritorious Service Award and the Air Force Association National Medal of Merit for the same year.
General Coffinger was promoted to brigadier general Oct. 1, 1985, with same date of rank.