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Paul W. Airey Noncommissioned Officer Academy

Paul W. Airey NCO Academy
417 Airey Avenue, Building 837
Tyndall AFB, FL 32403
Commercial: (850) 283-2404

The Paul W. Airey NCO Academy delivers high-quality education to over 1,000 NCOs per year from across eight Air Force installations. The academy prepares its students to be professional war-fighting Airmen who can lead, manage, and integrate across all domains in the effective execution of decentralized operations with the framework of Mission Command.

Mission Statement
Develop Enlisted Warfighters Through Education

Vision Statement
The Premier Development Experience - Educating Joint Enlisted Warfighters Primed for Executing Mission Command

Strengthen capacity and sustainment essential to advance the EPME ecosystem.
Cultivate strategic talent management and acquisition to attract, develop, and retain top-tier professionals.
Foster growth mindsets that enhance institutional knowledge, a culture of disciplined initiative and transformative leadership.
Maximize the impact of resources and investments for optimal returns and sustained educational advancements.
Forge strategic partnerships and collaborative practices that enhance competitive advantage across the enterprise.


The Airey NCO Academy has a long and proud history. It began in March 1957 at Otis AFB, Massachusetts. It was the Air Defense Command’s (ADC) first NCO Academy. In 1959, the academy moved temporarily to Stewart AFB, New York; and then to Hamilton AFB, California in 1960. The first CMSAF, Paul W. Airey, graduated from that location. The academy remained at Hamilton AFB until August 1973 when ADC moved the school to Tyndall AFB, Florida. In December 1975, the ADC NCO Academy received member accreditation with the Commission on Occupational Education Institutions of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

The academy moved into its present academic complex in October of 1978. The facility was constructed at a cost of almost 1.5 million dollars and was designed specifically for the NCO Academy.
On 1 October 1979, the ADC NCO Academy became the Tactical Air Command NCO Academy-East. The first enlisted commandant was CMSgt James E. Steinmark. In December 1980, the
academy received full collegiate accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commissions on Colleges.

Then on 1 June 1992, the school became the Air Combat Command NCO Academy-Tyndall. On 1 November 1993, it became part of Air University with the establishment of the College for Enlisted Professional Military Education and was known as the Tyndall NCO Academy. Tyndall NCO Academy was renamed the Paul W. Airey NCO Academy on 13 December 2006, Chief Airey’s birthday.

On 10 October 2018, Hurricane Michael devastated Tyndall AFB. Unable to teach from the building and location due to the hazardous conditions, the academy temporarily moved to Maxwell Air Force Base’s Gunter Annex and resumed operations in April 2019. The academy continued to operate from the Maxwell-Gunter Annex until October 1, 2020, when the Airey NCO Academy began its transition back to Tyndall AFB.

In October of 2020, the first three cadre members arrived at Tyndall AFB to begin the process of reopening the Airey NCO Academy. After a 10-million-dollar renovation and reconstitution project, the new Airey NCO Academy launched its first virtual class from Tyndall AFB, on 3 August 2021. Then, on 15 November 2021, Airey NCO Academy reopened its doors to in-residence students at Tyndall Air Force Base. The academy faced the prospect of permanent closure in December of 2022.  However, in a decisive move by senior Air Force officials, the academy is thriving and on track to host a maximum in-resident capacity of 195 students after a deliberate period of cadre, manpower, training, and infrastructure regeneration. 

Presently, Tyndall AFB is undergoing a transformative reconstruction phase, poised to emerge as the Department of Defense's Installation of the Future. Concurrently, The Paul W. Airey NCO Academy is slated to resume full-scale, in-resident student operations in October of 2024.

CMSgt Stephanie C. Patterson

Deputy Commandant
SMSgt Lawrence Danner Jr.

Current as of April 26, 2024.