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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 107-96
February 29, 1996

GENERAL JOSEPH W. RALSTON TO BE SWORN IN AS VICE CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF

Gen. Joseph W. Ralston, U.S. Air Force, will be sworn in as the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at a private ceremony in the Pentagon at 9 a.m., Friday, March 1, 1996. Secretary of Defense William J. Perry will conduct the ceremony. Gen. Ralston was appointed by President Clinton and will be the fourth officer to serve in that capacity. The Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the second highest ranking military officer in the U.S. military. The position was established by the 1986 Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act (PL 99-433).

Born in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, Gen. Ralston is a 1965 graduate of Miami University (Ohio). His most recent assignment was as the commander of the U.S. Air Force Air Combat Command at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. He has also commanded the Alaskan Command and the Alaskan NORAD Region. He has served as Deputy Chief of Staff of the Air Force for Plans and Operations, as Director of Tactical Programs in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, and as Director of Air Force Operational Requirements. In addition to a number of major command level staff positions, Gen. Ralston is a command pilot with more than 2,500 flying hours.

Gen. Ralston and his wife, the former Diane "Dede" Dougherty, have four children: Christopher, Paige, David and Sarah.