Born in Bowling Green, KY in 1951, Greg Smith began his 26-year active duty military career in 1974, after graduation from the University of Kentucky. He completed pilot training in 1975, and was assigned to Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska, where he flew the EC-135 “Looking Glass”, the Strategic Air Command’s airborne command post. In 1978, Greg was assigned to the 10th Airborne Command Control Squadron at RAF Mildenhall, England flying the United States European command post, known as Operation Silk Purse, as an aircraft commander and instructor pilot. He served as Executive Officer to the 513th Tactical Airlift Wing Commander in his fifth year. in England.
In 1983, Captain Smith was selected to fly the E-4B, a highly modified Boeing 747 aircraft that serves as the National Emergency Airborne Command Post (NEACP). Greg trained and qualified in the 747 at Pan Am International Flight Academy and returned to Offutt AFB for specialized E-4 training and crew duty. There are only four E-4B aircraft in the USAF, and are known as Project Nightwatch. He qualified as pilot, then aircraft commander and instructor pilot.
Major Smith completed Air Command and Staff College in 1987 and was posted to Headquarters, Strategic Air Command, as a mission analyst for strategic programs. After a brief stint as operations officer, Greg assumed command of the 1st Airborne Command Control Squadron in 1990.
Following a successful command tour, Lt Col Smith was selected to attend Air War College at Maxwell AFB AL. After graduation, Greg was assigned to the Joint Staff NEACP as an operations officer in the aircraft’s command center. In 1993, he was promoted to Director for Plans and Operations of the National Airborne Operations Center. After serving as Inspector General of the 5th Bomb Wing in Minot North Dakota, he returned to Offutt in 1998 as 55th Air Wing Vice Commander, and retired on May 26, 2000, with more than 6,000 flying hours in seven different types of aircraft. Following his retirement, he served as E4B/Air Force One communication programs manager, and business development director for Raytheon and L3 Communications.
His decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), the Aerial Achievement Medal, the Combat Readiness Medal, the Air Force Commendation Medal, and the Air Force Achievement medals.