Brigadier General Michael T. Rawls is the Deputy Commander, NATO Mission Iraq, Baghdad, Iraq. NATO Mission Iraq brings together a group of military and civilian personnel from across the Alliance with expertise in security sector reform, institution building, training and professional military education.
The mission works at the ministerial level, primarily within the Ministry of Defence, but also with the Office of the National Security Advisor and the Prime Minister’s National Operations Center. NATO Mission Iraq’s advisors span the institutional to the tactical level within the MoD, operating in the greater Baghdad area within three locations.
A native of Lexington, Kentucky, General Rawls entered the Air Force in 1992 as a distinguished graduate from the University of Kentucky, receiving a Bachelor’s of Science in Electrical Engineering. He holds Master’s degrees in Organizational Management from The George Washington University, Military Operational Art from Air University, and Strategic Leadership from the United States Army War College where he was also a Distinguished Graduate.
General Rawls is also a graduate of the USAF Test Pilot School.
He has served in staff positions as the Junior Military Aide to the Deputy Secretary of Defense, Chief Air Planner, United States Military Delegation to the NATO Military Committee, Brussels Belgium and most recently as F-35 Joint Capabilities Office 3F Capabilities Manager. He has been a Squadron Commander, Operations Officer, Wing Chief of Safety, Vice-Wing Commander and is a four time member of the US Military Pentathlon Team. As an operational pilot General Rawls flew the A-10A/C and F-15C with combat mission in Iraq supporting Operation Southern Watch. As a Test Pilot, he had assignments in the A-10C, F-15C and F-16 conducting joint weapons development. Prior to taking his current position, he served as the Commander, 435th Air Ground Operations Wing (USAFE) and the 435th Air Expeditionary Wing (AFAF), Ramstein Air Base, Germany.
General Rawls is a command pilot and has accumulated more than 2,100 hours in 30 different aircraft. He is married with two daughters.