Gen. (Ret.) Ronald W. Yates '60

Ronald W. Yates, General, USAF, Retired, is an independent consultant to the aerospace industry. He spent 35 years in the US Air Force. He is a combat fighter pilot and test pilot, and has over 5000 flying hours in over 50 different types of aircraft. General Yates has extensive experience in the acquisition business, having served as Program Director of both the F-15 and F-16 System Program Offices. He was also a Test Wing Commander.

General Yates served as Air Force Director of Tactical Programs in the Pentagon, and as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition. He was the Commander of both the Air Force Systems Command and the Air Force Materiel Command, where he was responsible for all Air Force research, development, acquisition policy, and logistics.

After retiring from the Air Force, General Yates served as a Commissioner on the National Research Council, on the Board of Visitors at both the National Defense University and the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute, as a Director of the Air Force Academy Association of Graduates, and on the Board of Directors of several publicly traded companies. He is currently on the Board of Directors of the U.S. Air Force Academy Endowment, and was recently selected to serve on the Board of Visitors of the Defense Acquisition University. He is a member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots.

General Yates graduated with a bachelor's degree from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1960, and holds a master’s degree in Systems Management from the University of Southern California. In 2004, General Yates received the U.S. Air Force Academy Distinguished Graduate Award.