Retired Aug. 1, 1970.
Brigadier General Raymond A. Gilbert is director of laboratories for Air Force Systems Command, Andrews Air Force Base, Md.
General Gilbert was born in 1919, in Mattoon, Ill., where he graduated from high school in 1936. He earned a bachelor of science degree cum laude and a master of science degree, both in physics from Ohio State University. In 1967 he received the honorary degree of doctor of science from the University of Albuquerque.
He entered military service in May 1941 as an aviation cadet and completed his pilot training at Ellington Army Air Field, Houston, Texas, in December 1941. He is a command pilot and has flown more than 4,000 hours.
Since 1952 all of his assignments have been in the field of research and development. In June 1952 General Gilbert was assigned to Headquarters Air Force Special Weapons Center at Kirtland Air Force Base, Albuquerque, N.M., as nuclear research officer. In January 1953 he became a physicist in the Theoretical Division of the University of California Radiation Laboratory (now the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory) operated for the Atomic Energy Commission at Livermore, Calif. He later was selected by that laboratory as the project manager of a nuclear weapons development program which culminated in a successful nuclear test at the Atomic Energy Commission's Nevada Test Site in spring 1955. He returned to Kirtland Air Force Base in August 1955 as chief, Analysis Division and later as director, Research Directorate, Air Force Special Weapons Center.
General Gilbert was assigned to the Washington, D.C., area in December 1958 as deputy commander, sciences, Office of Scientific Research, Headquarters U.S. Air Force. In 1959 he helped organize the Air Force Research Division of the Air Research and Development Command and in January 1960, became the deputy chief of staff, plans and operations and later chief of staff of that division. He remained as chief of staff when the Air Force Research Division became the Office of Aerospace Research coincident with the establishment of the Air Force Systems Command, April 1, 1961.
In July 1961 he became the Air Force member of the Director's Staff Group and later the military assistant to the deputy director (Research & Information) both in the Office of the Director of Defense Research and Engineering, Office of the Secretary of Defense.
General Gilbert returned to Kirtland Air Force Base in May 1963 as the first director and commander of the Air Force Weapons Laboratory and served in that position until September 1966. During that period, the Air Force Weapons Laboratory received two consecutive Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards.
His assignment prior to becoming director of laboratories for Air Force Systems Command in April 1967 was as vice commander, Headquarters Research and Technology Division at Bolling Air Force Base, Washington, D.C.
His military decorations include the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Air Force Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal and Air Force Outstanding Unit Award Ribbon with two oak leaf clusters.