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CMSgt Robert M. Dandridge

Chief Master Sgt. Robert M. Dandridge, National Command Chief

Chief Master Sgt. Robert M. Dandridge is Civil Air Patrol’s fourth National Command Chief. He serves as a member of the Command Senior Advisory Group and assists the National Commander in the completion of the nonprofit organization’s three core missions of Emergency Services, Aerospace Education, and Cadet Programs, as well as its increasing role in national Homeland Security as the newest member of the U.S. Air Force’s Total Force.

He also heads CAP’s Noncommissioned Officer Corps. Chief Dandridge began his service to Civil Air Patrol after his  cadet son asked him to volunteer with the Illinois Wing’s Scott Composite Squadron in 2004. Since then he has imparted aerospace education, disaster relief, encampment support, fitness, and member mentoring throughout CAP.

He holds a Master rating in Aerospace Education, earning the A. Scott Crossfield Aerospace Master Educator Award and a Senior rating in Cadet Programs. He formerly served as aRegion Cadet Leadership School, Chaplain Corps Region Staff College, and Region Staff College as instructor, supported a region flight academy and served a wing flight academy as Commandant of Cadets, assisted the National Emergency Services Academy with staffing, and directed over a dozen professional development programs featuring the Corporate Learning Course, Squadron Leadership School, and Unit Commanders Course. He also directed the Training Leaders of Cadets basic and intermediate courses throughout several wings and supported multiple wing encampments as a Character Development Instructor, Critical Incident Stress Management Officer, Safety Officer, and Tactical Officer.

Chief Dandridge’s Civil Air Patrol accomplishments include the Air Force Organizational Excellence Award, Squadron of Merit, and the Quality Cadet Unit Award. He completed CAP’s highest recognition for senior member professional development, earning the Gill RobbWilson Award, plus two wings’ Senior Member of the Year awards and a region Senior Member of the Year honor. He previously served as the Missouri Wing and Illinois Wing Command NCO. His professional affiliations include life member of the Air Force Association, Air Force Sergeants Association, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He partners with these organizations in recognizing outstanding CAP cadets nationwide with a medal and certificate.

Chief Dandridge was born at Bethesda Naval Station, Maryland, and traveled the world before graduating from high school at Fort Meade, Maryland. He holds two Associates of Applied Science degrees and an Aerospace Management Certificate from the Community College of the Air Force, as well as a Bachelor of Science through Park University. He is a graduate of the NCO Leadership School, Command NCO Academy, U.S. Air Force Senior NCO and First Sergeants Academies. He holds a Master rating in CAP's Aerospace Education specialty track and a Senior rating in Cadet Programs.

Chief Dandridge retired after a long and distinguished 30-year career as a Command Chief Master Sergeant with the Air Force, completing assignments in America, Asia, Central America, Europe, and the Middle East, serving as a Career Adviser, Environmentalist, Major Command Inspector and First Sergeant. He is married to Brenda, and they have two sons.

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