Colonel Antonio Ferrera Arriba was born on November 15th, 1969 in Sevilla (Spain). After his military service as soldier for 18 months, he began his military career in 1989, when he joined the General Military Academy (AGM). After five years, he graduated as an Infantry first lieutenant and was posted to the Third Legion Regiment in Fuerteventura (Canary Islands).
After four years commanding rifle platoon, weapons platoon and recce platoon, he was promoted to captain. He served for eight years in the same Legion Regiment, but in that time, in Almeria (southeast of Spain), where he got experience as company commander, battalion deputy chief of operations and battalion deputy chief of logistics. In 2005, he was promoted to major and got the Armed Forces General Staff Diploma after two years in Madrid. Then, he returned again to the Spanish Legion, this time, as a member of the Legion Brigade HQ, where he spent eight years. During this time, he was the Legion Brigade Chief of Operations for four years and the Legion Brigade Chief of Civil Affairs for another four years. In this last appointment, he got experience on CIMIC, protocol, public information and institutional affairs.
In 2014, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel and was appointed as the X Legion Battalion Commander in Ronda (Malaga) for three years. After that period, he joined the NATO Joint Warfare Center (JWC) in Stavanger (Norway), where he spent three years at the Concepts, Capability Integration and Experimentation Branch inside the Transformation Delivery Division (TDD).
Once returned to Spain, he worked as the Land Forces HQ Chief of Training for one year. In July 2021 he was promoted to Colonel and was posted as NMI Training Division Deputy Director at Union III in Baghdad (Iraq) until November where he will finish his tour. In December, he will take the command of the First Legion Regiment in Melilla (one of the two Spanish African cities).
His military career is full of experience in operations, as he participated in nine international deployments: Bosnia-Herzegovina (1996), Kosovo (1999 & 2001), FYROM (2001), Iraq (2003 & 2021), Afghanistan (2010) and Lebanon (2008 & 2016).
He has improved his military knowledge with several national and international courses:
- Armed Forces General Staff Diploma
- Public Information Officer Diploma
- NATO Provincial Reconstruction Team Course
- NATO Counter Improvised Explosive Disposal Awareness Course for Staff Officers
- NATO Counterinsurgency Course
- NATO Operational Planning Course
- NATO Concepts & Capability Integration Course
Colonel Ferrera has been honoured with some national and international decorations:
- Plaque, Commendation and Cross of Spanish Military Order of Saint Hermenegildo
- 5 Spanish Military Merit Cross (4 white ribbon & 1 blue ribbon)
- 6 NATO medals: Bosnia, Kosovo (2), FYROM, Afghanistan and Iraq
- Polish Medal for International Coalition in Iraq
- French Defence Honour Medal, bronze class
- Lebanese Armed Forces Medal for bravery merit
- Commendation of Spanish Civil Order
Regarding family, Colonel Ferrera is married with Mercedes and has two children: Carolina (1998), Psychology student in Malaga (Spain); and Antonio (2002), Aerospace Engineering student in Swansea (UK). He enjoy playing football, tennis & squash.