Col. Nina Armagno is returning to Partick Air Force Base as the commander of the 45th Space Wing after having served here in 2001.“I’m thrilled to be heading back to the Cape,” Armagno said.
“While I’ll be saddened to leave the Hawks of the 30th Space Wing, it is a distinct honor to be chosen to command the 45th Space Wing. From one amazing spacelift wing to another… what the men and women of Vandenberg and Patrick Air Force Base do for our nation is indispensible to the war-fighter and our national security.”
Current 45th Space Wing Commander Brig. Gen. Anthony Cotton is being assigned as deputy director at the National Reconnaissance Office, a position that will take him to northern Virginia, but one he said will keep him in close ties with Patrick Air Force Base.
Armagno, who has been selected to become a brigadier general, will become the new commander of the 45th Space Wing and director of the Eastern Range at Patrick Air Force Base.
A date for the change of command at Patrick Air Force Base has not been announced.
“Marsha and I have truly enjoyed our second time assigned to Patrick Air Force Base,” Cotton said. “What an opportunity to come back and launch rockets off the historic Florida Space Coast. More importantly, we are going to miss the women and men who make up an incredible wing; the professionals that make up the mission partners and the great community that makes all of us feel at home. We will take memories of the Space Coast with us as we move to northern Virginia.”
The NRO is the government agency in charge of designing, building, launching and maintaining the nation’s intelligence satellites.
Beside his role at the NRO, Cotton will also act as commander of the Air Force Space Command element in Chantilly, Va.
Cotton assumed command of the 45th Space Wing in August 2011. He previously served from June 2001 to March 2004 as operations officer for the 45th Range Squadron, commander of the 3rd Space Launch Squadron and deputy commander of the 45th Operations Group at Patrick.
“I know I will keep close ties with the wing in my new assignment with the National Reconnaissance Office, which has a number of important missions scheduled here at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station,” Cotton said. “But remember, we haven’t departed yet. There is still plenty of work to do in the next several months before I depart.”
Armagno, who is commander of 30th Space Wing, Air Force Space Command at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, previously served at Patrick from 2000 to 2001.