Weather Updates

Colonel named professional of the year

Lt. Col. John M. Vallrugo

Lt. Col. John M. Vallrugo SUBMITTED PHOTOS

storyidforme: 22997797
tmspicid: 8542556
fileheaderid: 3866263

Vallrugo’s EDUCATION

1983: BS in medical technology from College of St. Francis

1985: Transportation officers course at Sheppard Air Force Base

1996: Squadron officer’s school (correspondence)

2009: Certified MBA in strategic leadership from Western Governors University

Article Extras
Story Image

Updated: April 2, 2012 9:35AM

Air Force Lt. Col. John M. Vallrugo of Joliet was selected as the Air Force Reserve Command’s Lessons Learned Professional of the Year in the field grade category.

Vallrugo recently returned from a five-month deployment to southwest Asia. From May to October, he was deployed at an unspecified location in southwest Asia, where he served as the director for Air Force Central Command A9 Lessons Learned. He is currently assigned to the 94th Airlift Wing at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Georgia, where he serves as the wing process manager.

Vallrugo is a career military man, with 26 years of service behind him. He has made some great accomplishments while serving in his military career.

Currently, Vallrugo is the AFCENT A9 Director of Lessons Learned for United States Air Forces Central Command, or USAFCENT, at the Combined Air and Space Operations Center. The AFCENT A9 Directorate is responsible for the USAFCENT Lessons Learned program, which works to improve component and war-fighting missions by ensuring critical wartime lessons learned information is swiftly communicated to all personnel, thereby integrating these lessons during an individual’s or unit’s pre-deployment preparations and inclusion throughout all levels of joint and coalition operations.

He was commissioned through officer training school in 1985 and spent seven years on active duty as a transportation officer. Upon separating from the Air Force in 1992, he joined the Air Force Reserves as a traditional reservist until base closure of his unit in 1996. He then joined the Illinois Air National Guard as a traditional guardsman. In 2000, Vallrugo entered the Air Reserve. Technician program where he now serves as the acting Wing Executive Officer for the 94th Airlift Wing.

During Vallrugo’s military career he has served in the following assignments: 1985 to 1988, transportation officer, 10 TRNS, RAF Alconbury in the United Kingdom; 1988 to 1990, chief, aerial delivery functions, 4th MAPS, Rhein-Main AB in Germany; 1990 to 1991, squadron duty officer, 435th APS, Rhein-Main AB in Germany; 1991 to 92, Plans, Resources and Mobility, 435th APS, Rhein-Main AB in Germany; 1992 to 1993, assistant chief of transportation, 6500th TRNS, Edwards AFB in California; 1993 to 1996, Air Terminal Ops Center OIC, 28th APS, O’Hare IAP ARS in Chicago; 1996 to 1999, Commander, 182 APF in Peoria; 2000 to 2003, chief of plans, 913th AW, Willow Grove ARS in Pennsylvania; 2003 to 2006, operations officer, 913th LRS, Willow Grove ARS in Pennsylvania; 2006 to 2007, performance planner, 913th AW, Willow Grove ARS in Pennsylvania; 2007 to 2010, wing process manager, 94th AW, Dobbins ARB in Georgia; and 2010 to present, wing executive officer, 94th AW, Dobbins ARB in Georgia.

He is married to Dawn Vallrugo and has three children, Thomas, Ryan and Peter.

His proud parents are John and Camille Vallrugo of Joliet. Vallrugo is a graduate of Joliet East High School and the College of St. Francis.

Jean Edwards is currently searching for veterans to write about. She can be reached at 815-773-7172 at her new location in Joliet or email at

© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit To order a reprint of this article, click here.