544th Intelligence Group

The 544th Intelligence Group was reactivated September 1993 at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo.


The 544th IG is a team of approximately 500 Air Force members who deliver global, space-related information to national agencies and warfighting commands; provide policy guidance and functional assistance to assigned organizations; and develop mission-based facilities, communications and manpower requirements to improve quality of life.

Undoubtedly, staff support is at the heart of operations at the 544th IG. Recently reorganized into flights to better support the customer, the 544th IG Mission Support Flight and Operations Support Flight has broken many paradigms of a typical staff support function.

With a true "worldwide" mission, offices such as Personnel, Training, Security, Information Systems (formerly IM function), and resources help to keep the group functioning as a cohesive team to complete the Air Force mission. The Operations Support Flight provides operational support to the group's worldwide units and external space customers.

The Information Operations section is responsible for the group's communications- computer architecture, maintaining the mission infor-mation program, and also supports operations integration opportunities for the group. The Space Operations Support section provides embedded technical and analytic expertise to the Space Warfare Center and the worldwide deployable Air Force Space Support Teams.

Detachment 45, an Air Force Technical Applications Center unit, located at Buckley Air National Guard Base, Aurora, Colo., was activated Sept. 7, 1993. OL- CO is an operating location under Det. 45. The 544th IG provides administrative support to these units.

The 18th Intelligence Squadron, located at Falcon Air Force Base, Colo., was also activated under the 544th on Sept. 7, 1993.

The 18th IS has five detachments:

  • Det. 1, Holloman Air Force Base, N. M.
  • Det. 2, Osan Air Base, Korea
  • Det. 3, Misawa Air Base, Japan
  • Det. 4, RAF Feltwell, England
  • Det. 5, RAF Edzell, Scotland [deactivated]

    Det. 2, 544th IG, located at Sabana Seca, Puerto Rico; Det. 3, 544th IG, located at Sugar Grove, West Va.; and Det. 4, 544th IG, located at Yakima, Wash., were all activated on Jan. 1, 1995.

    Det. 5, 544th IG, located in Washington, D. C., was activated on Dec. 5, 1995.


    The 544th IG's vision is to be "The critical Air Force player in integrating space-based information shaping and protecting the information domain for coordinated multiforce employment."

    There are several key words in this vision that describe where the 544th IG aspires to be.

    CRITICAL The word critical means the 544th IG wants to be key players; they aspire to be an essential element in the Air Force mission.

    AIR FORCE Air Force is used to show the 544th IG aspires to be acknowledged as space experts across the Air Force, not just in AIA.

    INTEGRATING Integrating is a very important element in the vision not only does the 544th IG plan to integrate internally, but with other space organizations and with those organizations that they embed with. Integration will make the 544th IG efficient and effective.

    SPACE-BASED INFORMATION Space- based information defines the arena the 544th IG wants to be AIA's single space group.

    SHAPING AND PROTECTING THE INFORMATION DOMAIN Shaping and protecting the information domain refers to our combined missions and "coordinated multiforce employment" will serve to remind us of the larger mission we all serve.

    The 544th IG envisions a multi-polar world political situation with continued multiple contingencies. Economically, the country faces continued budget constraints. Technologically, the 544th IG sees a space-based future of integrated architecture with a focus on information operations. The 544th IG's vision is modeled after this scenario.


    The history of the 544th IG began Nov. 16, 1950, with the activation of the 544th Aerospace Reconnaissance Technical Wing at Bolling Air Force Base, Washington, D. C. The wing moved to Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., in June 1952, and was redesigned as the 544th Recon-naissance Technical Group July 11, 1958. After several name changes, it was deactivated June 1, 1992. Sept. 7, 1993, Col. Eric Larson became the commander of the newly reactivated 544th IG at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo.

    The group began with 12 subordinate units, detachments and oper-ating locations. Five new detachments have since been added and two other detachments deactivated. Group staff personnel located at Peterson Air Force Base provide administrative support, guidance and functional assistance to over 400 members of the wing- equivalent group, with 17 stateside and over-seas locations delivering global, space-related information to national agencies and warfighting commands. Prior to deactivation in 1992, the 544th IG was recognized with the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award 13 times. Reorganized under the Air Intelligence Agency in 1993, the group received its 14th Air Force Outstanding Unit Award in 1996.


    The 544th IG is located at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., home of Headquarters North American Aerospace Defense Command, United States Space Command, and Headquarters Air Force Space Command.

    Just outside Colorado Springs, Peterson is nestled on a gently rolling plateau 6,035 feet above sea level, sheltered by the towering 14,110 foot-high Pikes Peak. Combining scenic beauty, pleas-ant residential areas, cultural activities to satisfy every taste, and attractive military installations, Colorado Springs makes for a perfect assignment.

    The city offers a variety of activities, both recreational and cultural. You can ski in the morning, golf in the afternoon, and in the evening, go out on the town. Some of the area's best attractions are nature's man- made rock garden, Garden of the Gods; Pikes Peak, the United States Air Force Academy, and the Royal Gorge. The area has a little something for everyone young at heart.



    Det. 2, 544th IG is integrated with Naval Security Group Activity Sabana Seca, Puerto Rico. Its mission is to satisfy national and tactical customer requirements by performing satellite communications processing and for-warding, identifying emerging technologies, maintaining clear communications with Air Force chain of command and key administrative support elements, and supporting the host organization's goals and objectives.


    To integrate with NSGA Sebana Seca to become the premier satellite communications processing and analysis field station in the Department of Defense.

    Through a focused effort on the exploitation of emerging technologies, develop an unmatched capability of emerging technologies, develop an unmatched capability to identify

    variations in a rapidly changing com-munications environment and apply this resource as an integrated part of Department of Defense information operations into the 21st century.


    Detachment 2 was officially acti-vated on Dec. 8, 1995.



    Detachment 3, 544th Intelligence Group is a tenant unit and reports operationally to Naval Security Group Activity, located at Sugar Grove, W. Va.

    The detachment is administra-tively controlled by the 544th IG at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo. The 694th IG Mission Support Squadron at Fort Meade, Md., also provides administrative support to the detachment.

    Det. 3's mission is to direct satellite communications equipment supporting research and development for multi- service national missions.

    Det. 3 provides enhanced intelligence support to Air Force operational commanders and other consumers of COMSAT information collected by Navy- commanded field stations.

    This is achieved by embedding personnel into field station operations and by providing a trained cadre of collection system operators, analysts and managers for the Air Intelligence Agency.


    Det. 3's vision is to provide AIA a highly trained cadre of personnel to capitalize on emerging technologies to meet consumer requirements and to establish itself as a leader in the COMSAT environment by remaining on the cutting edge well into the 21st century.


    The detachment was established in January 1995, under the command of 1st Lt John Wynn, in concert with Det 2, 544th IG, Yakima Research Station, W. Va. and Det. 4, 544th IG, Sabana Seca, Puerto Rico. Officially activated in November 1995, the detachment consists of six personnel: one officer and five en-listed.

    Detachment personnel are integrated throughout the Operations De-partment to ensure greater mission exposure and training opportunities.


    Detachment personnel live and work side- by- side with U. S. Naval personnel at NSGA Sugar Grove.

    The base itself is located about three miles north of Sugar Grove, W. Va. Situated in the Appalachian Mountains of West Virginia, the base is a forested refuge from the din of civilization. Sugar Grove is nestled between two large national forests, and hunting and fishing opportuni-ties abound. The Potomac Highlands of Pendelton County contain some of the most scenic valleys in the U. S. A day's drive from the biggest cities on the East Coast, the area has much to offer those assigned. The nearby town of Franklin boasts a small assortment of country stores where one can obtain all the necessities of life. What one may find lacking in convenience and variety is more than made up for by the friendly attitudes of the local citizens. Activities abound which bring the base and the com-munity together.