Commanding Officer
Col Charles E Smith

Colonel Smith was commissioned a Second Lieutenant via the NROTC program at The Ohio State University in March 1995. Following graduation from The Basic School and the Naval Air Traffic Control School, Colonel Smith was designated an Air Traffic Control (ATC) Officer and reported to Marine Air Control Squadron 1 (MACS-1) Camp Pendleton, CA. From 1997-98, Colonel Smith deployed with HMM-268 (Rein) as the ATC Mobile Team Officer-in-Charge for the 11th MEU (SOC). During this deployment he provided ATC services for Operations DESERT THUNDER, SAFE DEPARTURE and SOUTHERN WATCH.

In 1998, Colonel Smith received orders to The Basic School where he served as Tactics Instructor, Staff Platoon Commander and Testing Officer. In 2001 he was selected to attend the Command and Control Systems School, Quantico, VA, earning the additional MOS of Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence Planner. Following graduation he received orders to MACS-1 Yuma, AZ and served as ATC Detachment C Commander, where he led the 2003 deployment of the first ATC Detachment into Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. During this tour he also attended the Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) Course and was designated a WTI for Aviation Command, Control, and Communications. From 2004 until 2006, Colonel Smith was assigned to MCAS Yuma as the Air Traffic Control Facility Officer. In July 2006, Colonel Smith received orders to the Chief of Naval Operations, Director of Air Warfare N88, as the ATC and Expeditionary Airfield Requirements Officer. He served in this capacity until June of 2008 and received orders to Okinawa, Japan where he served as the Executive Officer, MACS-4.

From July 2009 to July 2010, Colonel Smith attended the U.S. Air Force Command and Staff College in Montgomery, AL. Following school, Colonel Smith received orders to Creech Air Force Base, NV, Joint UAS Center of Excellence, Joint Staff, J8, as the Chief of Airspace Integration. In August 2011, he reported to Marine Air Control Group 28, Cherry Point, NC and served as the Operations Officer and Executive Officer. In June 2013, Colonel Smith was appointed as the Marine Air Control Group 28 (FWD) Commanding Officer and deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM 13/14. In May 2014, Colonel Smith assumed command of Marine Air Control Squadron 2, Cherry Point, NC until June 2016. Colonel Smith was selected to serve as the Commandant of the Marine Corps’ Fellow to the U.S. State Department, Bureau of Diplomatic Security, from July 2016 to June 2017. In June 2017, Colonel Smith was assigned to the Joint Staff, J6, C4/Cyber, as the Chief of Integration. In August 2018, Colonel Smith executed orders to 1st MAW, Okinawa, Japan and served as the 1st MAW Inspector General until he assumed command of Marine Air Control Group 18 on 29 May 2019.  

Colonel Smith is a graduate of the Command and Control Systems Course, Amphibious Warfare School, Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course, Marine Corps Command and Staff College, the U.S. Air Force Command and Staff College, and the Joint Forces Staff College. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Aviation Management, a Master of Military Operational Art and Science and a Master of Arts in Security Management, with Honors. His personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Meritorious Service Medal with three Gold Stars, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with three Gold Stars, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal.