Retired July 1, 2002.
Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Jim Finch represents the highest enlisted level of leadership, and as such, provides the direction for the enlisted corps and represents their interests, as appropriate, to the American public and to those in all levels of government. He serves as the personal adviser to the Secretary of the Air Force and the Air Force Chief of Staff on all issues regarding the welfare, readiness, morale, proper utilization and progress of the enlisted force. Chief Finch is the 13th chief master sergeant appointed to the highest noncommissioned officer position.
Chief Finch grew up in East Hampton, N.Y. He entered the Air Force in July 1974. His background is in missile maintenance and professional military education, and he has served in a number of operational, maintenance and support units at every level of command, from squadron through major air command. His assignments have included bases in Colorado, Florida, Alabama, Texas, Virginia and Washington, D.C. He has served overseas in the United Kingdom and Alaska. Before assuming his current position, Chief Finch served as the Command Chief Master Sergeant for the commander of Air Combat Command at Langley Air Force Base, Va. While at ACC, the command was involved in operations such as Provide Promise, Northern Watch, Southern Watch, Deliberate Force, Joint Endeavor, Desert Fox and Allied Force. He became Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force on Aug. 2, 1999.
1980 Tactical Air Command Noncommissioned Officer Leadership School, Homestead Air Force Base, Fla.
1983 Tactical Air Command Noncommissioned Officer Academy, Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.
1987 Associate degree in electronic systems technology, Community College of the Air Force
1990 U.S. Air Force Senior Noncommissioned Officer Academy, Gunter Air Force Base, Ala.
1991 Associate degree in instructor of technology, Community College of the Air Force
1. July 1974 - September 1974, student, Air Force basic military training, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas
2. September 1974 - February 1975, student, Missile Maintenance Technician School, Lowry Air Force Base, Colo.
3. March 1975 - November 1976, missile maintenance technician, 31st Munitions Maintenance Squadron, Homestead Air Force Base, Fla.
4. November 1976 - July 1978, missile maintenance technician, 7551st Ammunition Supply Squadron, Royal Air Force Welford, England
5. July 1978 - April 1980, missile maintenance crew chief and shift supervisor, 31st Equipment Maintenance Squadron, Homestead Air Force Base, Fla.
6. April 1980 - October 1984, instructor and Director of Education, Tactical Air Command Noncommissioned Officer Professional Military Education Center, Homestead Air Force Base, Fla.
7. October 1984 - June 1988, Chief, Nonresident Course Development; Director, Noncommissioned Officer Preparatory Course Instructor Course; and Chief, Noncommissioned Officer Professional Military Education Evaluations and Analysis Branch, Leadership and Management Development Center, Center for Professional Development, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
8. June 1988 - August 1992, Superintendent for Noncommissioned Officer Professional Military Education, Air Force Military Personnel Center, Randolph Air Force Base, Texas
9. September 1992 - July 1993, Commandant, Pacific Air Forces Noncommissioned Officer Academy - Alaska, Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska
10. July 1993 - July 1995, Senior Enlisted Adviser, 11th Air Force, Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska
11. July 1995 - July 1999, Command Chief Master Sergeant, Air Combat Command, Langley Air Force Base, Va.
12. August 1999 June 2002, Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Distinguished Service Medal
Legion of Merit
Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Aug 2, 1999