47th Flying Training Wing welcomes new commander

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Kailee Reynolds
  • 47th Flying Training Wing

47th Flying Training Wing (FTW) Airmen bid farewell to Col. Kevin Davidson and welcomed new commander, Col. Tyler Ellison, during a change of command ceremony here, June 26, 2024. 

Brig. Gen. Randall Cason, Mobilization Assistant to the Commander, Nineteenth Air Force, presided over the ceremony, reflecting on the pivotal role the 47th FTW plays in the success of the Air Force. 

“Air Education and Training Command’s (AETC) mission is to find, recruit, train and educate the Airmen the nation needs; the 47th Flying Training Wing excels at all of those, whether a pilot trainee or a first-term airman, this wing is an example of how to do it right,” said Cason. “More than just a training wing, Team Laughlin is forging the next generation of airmen, ensuring readiness for future war fighters and developing airmen with the competencies to win against any adversary.” 

Ellison previously served as the 1st Fighter Wing vice commander at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia; assisting the commander in ensuring the wing continues to be ready to deploy and employ F-22A Raptor air dominance fighters worldwide in support of Combatant Commander taskings.  

As the commander of the 47th Flying Training Wing, he now oversees nearly 2,800 military and civilian personnel engaged in executing more than 61,000 aircraft sorties yearly. 

“It is with great humility and honor that I stand before you today,” said Ellison. “To all the Airmen of Laughlin Air Force Base, I am incredibly excited to join your ranks and become a part of your elite team. As we embark on this journey together, know that I am fully committed to supporting each and every one of you, both personally and professionally, as we continue to develop the next generation of Air Force leaders and warriors” 

The 47th FTW’s critical mission has remained the same since 1962: train and develop the finest military pilots. Beginning with the first Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) class in the mid-1950s, silver wings have been pinned on nearly 21,000 pilots. Currently, the base utilizes the T-6A Texan II, T-38C Talon and the T-1A Jayhawk to teach American and allied nation’s pilots to fly. 

“Our mission is not only vital to the defense of our nation, but also serves as a testament to the spirit of innovation and courage of every Airmen who joins the ranks of Team XL,” said Ellison. “Together, we will push the boundaries of producing the world’s greatest pilots and combat-ready Airmen while upholding the proud legacy of Laughlin Air Force Base.” 

Davidson, who will be taking on a new assignment at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., served as commander of the 47th FTW since July 22, 2022. 

“[Ellison and his family], welcome to Team XL, where we build combat-ready Airmen, leaders and pilots,” said Davidson. “They produce the world’s greatest pilots and air traffic controllers and deploy tasked Airmen on time. They do that by disciplined execution of the standards and regulations, ensuring quality on-time UPT graduation while developing ready Airmen, all in an environment of dignity and respect. They are ready for your leadership, and I am excited to see where you take them. So ‘XL 01 number 50’ is signing off, and here’s to a great day of flying Team XL.”