Swedish Royal Air Force officer promoted under Alabama skies

  • Published
  • By Air University Public Affairs

Freshly-minted Air Command and Staff College graduate Swedish Royal Air Force officer Johan Jeppsson was promoted to lieutenant colonel on May 25, 2023, under the bright Alabama skies. 

Col. Jonas Nellsjo, air and space attaché, assistant defense attaché, Embassy of Sweden, promoted him. Also in attendance was Col. Alex Ganster, commandant, International Officer School, and director, International Affairs at Air University. 

Jeppsson’s wife and sons joined him for the ceremony, which was live-streamed to his family in Sweden.

Jeppsson said he enjoyed his time at Maxwell and made lifelong friends and memories during Air Command and Staff College. 

"Being given the opportunity to attend the IOS and ACSC here at Maxwell has been a great experience for me and my family,” he said. “We’ve really enjoyed being part of the Air Force family and the local community in Montgomery!” 

He follows in the famous footsteps of other Swedish Airmen who have attended Air University schoolhouses, most notably Sweden’s first flying officer to do so, Capt. Gustav Q. Strom, who toured the U.S. aviation industry in 1926 and 1927 seeking inspiration for airframes on behalf of his nation’s air force. Strom later attended the Air Corps Tactical School during the 1930-1931 academic year. He was one of 17 allied officers to attend the school during its 20-year existence between 1920 and 1940. 

“Many future chiefs of staff of allied and partner air forces have come through our various courses at Air University,” said Ganster. “Perhaps in the not-so-distant future we may welcome back a ‘General Johan Jeppsson’ as Sweden’s air chief.”

In the coming weeks, Jeppsson will return to flying duties in Sweden where he will lead the Gripen operational test and evaluation squadron.