Air Force Historical Foundation
Board of Directors
Gen. James M. “Mike” Holmes, USAF, Retired
Chairman of the Board
Gen. Mike Holmes retired from the Air Force in October 2020 after nearly 40 years of service. In addition to serving the Air Force Historical Foundation as Chairman of the Board, he is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, an adjunct fellow at the Center for a New American Security, a member of the Air Force Studies Board, a senior advisor at The Roosevelt Group, the Chairman of the Board at Red 6, and advises several defense and tech companies.
Holmes completed his Air Force service leading the transformation of Air Combat Command (ACC), a global organization operating and sustaining over 1000 aircraft and 11 Air Force Bases with an annual operating budget of $7.4B. As the Air Force’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Plans and Programs, he led a team that shifted Air Force strategy to respond to a new national security environment and built and defended the U.S. Air Force’s input to three $600B Five Year Defense Plans with the Department of Defense and U.S. Congress. As the Deputy Commander of Air Education and Training Command, Holmes directed all aspects of U.S. Air Force education and training, from basic and technical training to advanced degree programs. As the Air Force’s Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Requirements, he coordinated global Air Force operations and requirements with the Joint Chiefs of Staff and regional military commanders. As Principal Director for Mid-East Policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Holmes formulated regional defense policy with the National Security Council and Department of State and coordinated U.S. defense relationships and activities with international partners. Before assuming his strategic roles, he commanded Air Force teams in positions of increasing complexity, responsibility, and accountability at the squadron, group, and wing level, including a year in command of Air Force forces in Afghanistan.
Holmes graduated from the U.S. Naval War College’s National Security Strategy program with highest honors and completed both the U.S. Air Force’s School for Advanced Air and Space Power Studies program and the Fighter Weapons Instructor Course at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. He was the Graduate of the Year in the University of Alabama’s Master of Arts in History program at Maxwell AFB and received a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Tennessee. He is a fighter pilot with over 4,000 hours in the F-15 and T-38, including over 500 combat hours, and continues to fly general aviation aircraft.
Jonna Doolittle Hoppes
Jonna Doolittle Hoppes is the Founder and Executive Director of The Doolittle Foundation, an organization dedicated to making U.S. military history available to students. She is currently involved in developing lesson plans for teachers in public, private, and homeschool settings and with setting up programs that link veterans with local schools in their communities. Her lectures are focused on encouraging veterans to record their individual histories and communicate those stories to the public to help with the preservation of their personal accounts, along with overall education for the public.
Ms. Doolittle Hoppes is the author of three books. Calculated Risk: The Extraordinary Life of Jimmy Doolittle is a memoir of her famous grandfather, aviator Jimmy Doolittle, and his equally extraordinary wife, Joe. Her second book, Just Doing My Job, is a collection of biographical stories from World War II. The Wrong Stuff is a biography of General William Lyon, told in his own words. Ms. Hoppes currently serves as President of the Air Force Historical Foundation and is a Distinguished Advisor to the Flying Tiger Historical Foundation.
Maj. Gen. John L. Barry, USAF, Retired
1st Vice Chairman
Maj. Gen. John Barry is the current President/CEO of the Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum, located in Denver, Colorado. Prior to assuming this position, Barry was the Superintendent of Aurora Public Schools for seven years, from 2006-2013. Before returning to Colorado, he served in the U.S. Air Force for over 30 years as a combat veteran, fighter pilot, Graduate of the U.S. Air Force Weapons School, Military Assistant to the Secretary of Defense, and commander multiple times at the squadron, group and twice at the wing command level. He is also a survivor of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon. Barry retired from the U.S. Air Force in 2004 as a “Two Star,” Major General, and served his last tour on active duty as Board Member and Executive Director for the Space Shuttle Columbia Accident Investigation.
Barry is a 1973 Honor Graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, with a double major in International Affairs and Political Science and is a Distinguished Graduate from USAF Pilot Training. Barry received his Master of Public Administration from Oklahoma University, was a White House Fellow in 1986-1987, attended the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard on a fellowship in 1993-1994, and is a 2004 graduate of the Broad Superintendent Academy.
Dr. Rebecca Grant
Dr. Rebecca Grant is a national security analyst based in Washington, D.C., and is the founder of IRIS Independent Research. Grant earned her Ph.D. in International Relations from the London School of Economics at age 25. After receiving her doctorate, she immediately went to work for the RAND Corporation and then served on the staff of both the Secretary of the Air Force and the Chief of Staff of the Air Force.
Since founding IRIS Independent Research, Grant has specialized in research for government and aerospace industry clients ranging from analysis of military campaigns to projects on major technology acquisition such as the B-21 bomber. Dr. Grant has written over 100 articles for Air Force Magazine and appears regularly on the Smithsonian Channel, Fox News, CNN, Veterans Radio, and other media outlets talking about airpower and national security. She has flown with the United States Air Force in the T-38, E-3 AWACS, B-52, F-16 Aggressors, F-15 in Exercise Cope North and in the B-2 Spirit bomber.
Col. Stephen E. “Steve” Newbold, USAF, Retired
Col. Steve Newbold served for 26 years in the U.S. Air Force before retiring in 2005. He was an aircraft maintenance officer primarily supporting F-4E, F-111A, EF-111A, and F-15C/D/E aircraft. Newbold served as a Squadron Commander three times, the 48th Maintenance Group Commander at RAF Lakenheath, UK, and is a veteran of Desert Storm.
Upon retirement from the U.S. Air Force, Newbold worked for GE Aviation from 2005 to 2020, retiring as the GE Aviation Executive Director in support of U.S. Air Force aircraft engine programs.
Newbold is a 1979 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy and earned an MBA from Golden Gate University.