Brig. Gen. Jason Cothern
Deputy Commander, Space Systems Command, Los Angeles Air Force Base, California
U.S. Space Force
Brig. Gen. D. Jason Cothern serves as the Deputy Commander, Space Systems Command, Los Angeles Air Force Base, California. He is responsible for managing the research, design, development, acquisition, and sustainment of space systems, command and control, launch, and operational satellite systems. Space Systems Command manages an $11 billion annual budget for the DoD and employs 10,000 professionals to develop, acquire, launch, field and sustain space capabilities that protect joint warfighters and national interests in space.
Brig. Gen. Cothern was commissioned in 1993 as an ROTC graduate of the University of Central Florida. His career has spanned a range of assignments primarily acquiring or planning for a variety of space systems, running the gamut from communications, signals intelligence, missile warning, and force application. His space systems experience includes all major segments: ground, space vehicles, payloads, and launch vehicles. He commanded the Space Based Infrared Systems Ground Squadron, Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base, California, where he led his unit during development, test and fielding of the ground control system for the first SBIRS geosynchronous satellite. Brig. Gen. Cothern’s joint assignment was in the U.S. Strategic Command’s Center for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction as Chief of the Requirements Integration Department.
Prior to his current assignment, the general served as the Assistant Program Director for Development at the F-35 Lightning II Joint Program Office, Arlington, Virginia. He led all aspects of fifth generation fighter modernization activities focused on delivering three F-35 variants to the Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps, eight international partners and three foreign military sales nations, ultimately producing 3,170 aircraft and supporting air system elements utilizing over $250 billion in U.S. funds. He directed a 1,194-person joint and multinational team, building and executing acquisition strategies for continued modernization and delivery of the F-35.