55th Communications Group changes leadership

  • Published
  • By L. Cunningham
  • 55th Wing Public Affairs

The 55th Communications Group held a change of command ceremony June 23, 2022, at Offutt Air Force Base.

After having led the 55th CG since July 2020, Col. Larry Fletcher relinquished command to Col. Matthew Hensley.  

Hensley graduated from Officer Training School in 2000 and is a career cyberspace operations officer who has served in various positions at the squadron, group, wing, joint OSD and Headquarters Air Force levels. He was previously director of Plans and Policy, Joint Force Headquarters, Fort Meade, Maryland. 

“I’m excited to return to Offutt Air Force Base for a second time and take command of this outstanding group, working in a great wing and being part of this outstanding community,” said Hensley, 55th CG commander. “To the Airmen of the 55th, I look forward to the challenges we will face together and no doubt the success’s you will accomplish over the next two years.”

Over the last two years the group helped restore technology to house the many personnel dislocated due to the 2019 flood. The 55th CG is the only communications group within Air Combat Command, with over 400 Airmen providing vital cyber operations for ACC’s largest, most diverse wing and more than 50 mission partners, including the 557th Weather Wing and 595th Command and Control Group. They also provide critical nuclear command and control and missile warning communications in support of U.S. Strategic Command and the National Airborne Operations Center.

“We are inheriting a leader that we can all look up to, learn from, and model our leadership after. He’s made a career out of being a cyberspace expert, which for Offutt is truly perfect,” said Col. Kristen Thompson, 55th Wing commander. “I look forward to seeing what Col. Hensley does to drive us forward.”

Fletcher will be participating in the Skillbridge Fellowship Program, a military transition program at Albers Aerospace in McKinney, Texas. Once completed, he will retire from active duty.

“The 55th CG is the center of excellence with everything having to do with the Lead Wing communications and progressive cyber capabilities,” said Thompson. “Col. Fletcher, I hope you never forget how you made the Air Force better and made every Airmen better, including me. We all owe you so much.”