Presented to: Major Clifford Lucas
Citation: For the organization and execution of advanced training scenarios, increasing an aircrew’s joint readiness to navigate and employ in contested and degraded environments.
Major Clifford Lucas leads the training of aircrew in navigating and employing within contested and degraded operating environments. As the U.S. Air Force (USAF) Weapons School advanced integration lead for the Special Operations Forces, Major Lucas designed, developed, organized, and executed missions to validate tactics, techniques, and procedures for operating in hostile and denied locations. Integrating all service components with Special Operations Forces requires executing precise navigation and timing without traditional navigational aids in order to achieve speed, surprise and violence of action on a target. Lucas used capabilities such as threat replicators, electromagnetic interference tools, GPS jammers and line-of-sight communication jammers to frustrate the aircrew during planning and execution training. These scenarios allow aircrews to train in a controlled environment and apply skills learned in future missions.
Major Lucas enlisted in the Air Force as an honor graduate from basic military training and served seven years as an airborne battle management systems specialist on the E-8C JSTARS and the AC-130U “Spooky” gunship. He received his commission in 2008 as a distinguished graduate from officer training school. He is an outstanding graduate of the USAF Weapons School and is currently assigned as the assistant operations officer for the AC-130 Weapons Instructor Course, responsible for producing weapons officers in the AC-130U and AC-130W.
Major Lucas has more than 3,700 flight hours in various aircraft, including more than 1,800 combat hours in support of Operations IRAQI FREEDOM and ENDURING FREEDOM. His decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal, 14 Air Medals, three Air Force Commendation Medals, the Army Achievement Medal, and the Air Force Combat Action Medal. He is a graduate of Touro University International and has an MS degree in operations management from the University of Arkansas.