Maj. Gen. Donald C. Wurster is Deputy Director, Center for Special Operations, U.S. Special Operations Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Fla. The center brings together those elements of the U.S. Special Operations Command that focus on the warfight. The center?s mission is to collaborate with the geographic combatant commanders and interagency partners on current and future special operations.
Born in Washington, D.C., General Wurster was commissioned in 1973 upon graduation from the U.S. Air Force Academy, Colo. In 1974, he completed undergraduate helicopter training at Fort Rucker, Ala. He has commanded special operations forces at the squadron, group, wing and subunified command level, and he served as commander of all U.S. forces assigned to Joint Task Force-510 during Operation Enduring Freedom - Philippines. Prior to his current assignment, the general was Director, Center for Intelligence and Information Operations, USSOCOM.
General Wurster is a command pilot with more than 4,000 flying hours, including assignments in both rescue and special operations.
1973 Bachelor of Science degree, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.
1982 Distinguished graduate, Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1983 Master of Arts degree, Webster University, St. Louis, Mo.
1987 Distinguished graduate, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1994 Air War College, by correspondence
1997 Industrial College of the Armed Forces, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
1. June 1973 - July 1974, student, undergraduate helicopter training, Fort Rucker, Ala.
2. July 1974 - March 1975, student, HH-3E Jolly Green Giant training, Hill AFB, Utah
3. March 1975 - May 1976, HH-3E pilot, Detachment 13, 41st Rescue and Weather Reconnaissance Wing, Osan Air Base, South Korea
4. May 1976 - July 1979, HH-3E instructor pilot, 71st Air Rescue and Recovery Squadron, Elmendorf AFB, Alaska
5. July 1979 - November 1980, inactive Air Force Reserve, Lowry AFB, Colo.
6. November 1980 - December 1983, HH-3E evaluator pilot, 1550th Aircrew Training and Test Wing, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
7. December 1983 - July 1986, weapon systems program manager for rescue and special operations forces, Aircraft Acquisition Branch, Headquarters Military Airlift Command, Scott AFB, Ill.
8. July 1986 - June 1987, student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
9. June 1987 - July 1989, MH-60G Pave Hawk assistant operations officer, 55th Special Operations Squadron, Eglin AFB, Fla.
10. July 1989 - August 1991, program element monitor for rescue and special operations forces, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
11. August 1991 - July 1994, operations officer, then MH-53J Pave Low IIIE commander, 21st Special Operations Squadron, Royal Air Force Woodbridge and Royal Air Force Alconbury, England
12. July 1994 - July 1996, assistant for electronics, communications and special programs, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low-Intensity Conflict, Forces and Resources, Washington, D.C.
13. July 1996 - July 1997, student, Industrial College of the Armed Forces, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.
14. July 1997 - September 1997, MH-53J requalification, 551st Flying Training Squadron, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
15. September 1997 - June 1998, Commander, 16th Operations Group, Hurlburt Field, Fla.
16. June 1998 - July 1999, Commander, 16th Special Operations Wing, Hurlburt Field, Fla.
17. October 1999 - October 2000, Inspector General, U.S. Transportation Command and Headquarters Air Mobility Command, Scott AFB, Ill.
18. October 2000 - February 2003, Commander, Special Operations Command, Pacific, Camp H.M. Smith, Hawaii
19. February 2003 - May 2004, special assistant to the Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command, later, Director, Center for Intelligence and Information Operations, USSOCOM, MacDill AFB, Fla.
20. May 2004 - present, Deputy Director, Center for Special Operations, USSOCOM, MacDill AFB, Fla.
Rating: Command pilot
Flight hours: More than 4,000
Aircraft flown: AC-130, HH-3E, MC-130, MH-53J and MH-60G
MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Defense Superior Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters
Aerial Achievement Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Achievement Medal
Humanitarian Service Medal with bronze star
EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION
Second Lieutenant June 6, 1973
First Lieutenant June 6, 1975
Captain June 6, 1977
Major Feb. 1, 1986
Lieutenant Colonel April 1, 1989
Colonel June 1, 1996
Brigadier General Sept. 1, 2000
Major General Oct. 1, 2004