United States Air Force Academy

Go to home page

Dr. Chris Luedtke

Deputy Director

Center for Character and Leadership Development

Official photo of Dr. Chris Luedtke (CCLD).
Contact Information

(719) 333-4179

Email

Bio

Dr. Chris Luedtke serves as the Deputy Director of the U.S. Air Force Academy Center for Character and Leadership Development. The Center focuses on USAFA's primary mission to develop leaders of character through integration, development, research and assessment.

Dr. Luedtke entered the Air Force in 1987 after graduating from the U.S. Air Force Academy and earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Military History. He served as a commander three times at the group, squadron, and joint levels. Dr. Luedtke served on the Joint Staff as the lead for Afghanistan Strategic Plans and Policy where he advised the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and led Joint Staff participation in the development of the U.S. National Strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan. He worked on the staff of the Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force, International Affairs, providing oversight and guidance for international policy and programs in cooperative research and development. Dr. Luedtke has four previous deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq. He served as the Senior Advisor to the Commander, International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan with a focus on counterinsurgency strategy, stability operations, civil-military operations and Provincial Reconstruction Teams.

In 2010, Dr. Luedtke was recognized by the Afghan Minister of Defense with the award of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan First Degree Baryal Medal for his sustained superior contributions to Afghanistan. He also previously served as the Commander of the Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team and Commander of Forward Operating Base Lion in Panjshir, Afghanistan, where he led civil affairs missions and combat operations using combat patrols, information operations, humanitarian assistance, medical engagements, police training and reconstruction projects, which facilitated security, good governance and economic development. He also previously served in Afghanistan as the Advisor to the Afghan Minister of Defense to further the development of the Afghan National Army and Air Corps. Dr. Luedtke deployed to Iraq as the Deputy Commander, 332nd Expeditionary Mission Support Group, Balad Air Base, where he was responsible for force protection and base support operations.

Dr. Luedtke earned his Ph.D. in Higher Education at Florida State University with a research focus on college student moral development. He earned the academic rank of Associate Professor as a faculty member at the U.S. Air Force Academy teaching Military Strategic Studies. Dr Luedtke led research, assessment and organizational change efforts at the Academy during the Agenda for Change to improve culture and climate at the institution. He also contributed to the establishment of the Officer Development System guiding leadership development at the Air Force Academy. He is a past recipient of the Air Force Academy Outstanding Academy Educator Award.

Dr. Luedtke served as the U.S. Senior Defense Official and Defense Attaché in Stockholm, Sweden wherehe advised senior U.S., NATO, and Swedish officials on European Security. He was awarded the Order of the Polar Star from the King of Sweden in March 2017 for his superior contributions in Swedish-U.S. Defense and Security Policy. Dr. Luedtke retired from the U.S. Air Force as a Colonel on 31 May 2017.

Education

Air War College, Air University, Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, Ala. (by seminar) (2005)

Master of Arts in Military Operational Arts and Sciences, Air University, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, Ala. (2002)

Doctorate of Philosophy in Higher Education, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Fla. (1999 )

Squadron Officers School, Air University, Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, Ala. (1992)

Master of Arts in Public Administration, Troy State University, Troy, Ala. (1991)

Bachelor of Science in Military History, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. (1987)

Professional Experience

Deputy Director, Center for Character and Leadership Development, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colo. (March 2017-Present)

U.S. Senior Defense Official and Defense Attaché to Sweden (Feb. 2014-March 2017)

Student, Defense Language Institute and Joint Military Attaché School, Washington, District of Columbia (Jan. 2013-Feb. 2014)

Political-Military Affairs Officer, International Armaments Cooperation, Office of the Under Secretary of the Air Force for International Affairs, Washington, District of Columbia (July 2012-Jan. 2013)

Commander, 87th Mission Support Group, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. (July 2010-July 2012)

Senior Advisor to the Commander, International Security Assistance Force and the Commander, U.S. Forces Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan (June 2009-April 2010)

Chief, Afghanistan Branch, Joint Chiefs of Staff, J5/Strategic Plans and Policy, Washington, District of Columbia (June 2008-June 2010)

Commander, Panjshir Provincial Reconstruction Team and Commander, Forward Operating Base Lion, Panjshir, Afghanistan (Jan. 2007-April 2008)

Deputy Commander, 332d Expeditionary Mission Support Group, Balad Air Base, Iraq (Sep.-Dec. 2006)

Deputy Commander, 75th Mission Support Group, Hill Air Force Base, Utah (May 2006-Jan. 2007)

Commander, 75th Mission Support Squadron, Hill Air Force Base, Utah (July 2005-Aug. 2006)

Advisor to the Afghanistan Minister of Defense, Office of Military Cooperation-Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan (Oct. 2004-March 2005)

Director, Commander’s Action Group, Commandant of Cadets, 34thTraining Wing, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. (April 2003-uly 2005)

Associate Professor of Military Strategic Studies, 34th Education Squadron, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. (July 2002-April 2003)

Student, Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, Ala. (July 2001-July 2002)

International Political-Military Affairs Officer, Headquarters United States Air Forces Europe, Ramstein Air Base, Germany (Aug.1999-July 2001)

Doctoral Student, AF Institute of Technology, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Fla. (Aug. 1996-Aug.1999)

Assistant Professor of Military Art and Science, 34th Education Squadron, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. (June 1993-Aug.1996)

Accounting/Finance Officer, 14th Flying Training Wing, Columbus Air Force Base, Lowndes County, Miss. (March 1990-June 1993)

Deputy Accounting and Finance Officer, 3415th Comptroller Squadron, Lowry Air Force Base, Denver, Colo. (July 1987-March 1990)

Honors & Awards

Defense Superior Service Medal with oak leaf cluster Legion of Merit

Bronze Star Medal with two oak leaf clusters

Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters

Joint Service Commendation Medal

Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster

Air Force Achievement Medal

Army Achievement Medal

Air Force Recognition Ribbon

National Defense Service Medal with bronze star

Afghanistan Campaign Medal with three campaign stars

Iraq Campaign Medal with campaign star

Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal

Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

NATO Medal- International Security Assistance Force with campaign star

2017 Awarded Kingdom of Sweden Knight Commander in the Order of the Polar Star

2010 Awarded Islamic Republic of Afghanistan First Degree Baryal Medal

1996 Air Force Academy Outstanding Academy Educator Award