Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier was the Chief of the Air Staff from July 2016 to July 2019.
Prior to assuming his current appointment in July 2016, he was the Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Military Capability) in the Ministry of Defence between 2012 and 2016, responsible for strategic force design, balance of investment and capability coherence across all areas of UK joint military capability. He has significant other experience in MOD capability planning, acquisition and programme delivery, and his most recent previous command appointment was as Air Officer Commanding 2 Group from 2008 to 2010, responsible for the RAF’s ISTAR, Air Transport, Air-Refuelling, Force Protection and Search and Rescue capabilities.
A Tornado GR4 pilot and flying instructor, he has over 3500 flying hours and extensive operational and command experience, ranging from squadron pilot to theatre commander of British Forces. He received his knighthood in 2014 and was appointed CBE in 2004. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for operations over Iraq in 1999, and the United States Bronze Star for Iraq operations in 2003.
He is married to Elaine, who has provided incredible support to him and to the wider RAF family for over 30 years, and has 2 grown-up children. Air Chief Marshal Hillier relaxes through running half-marathons, usually for Service charities, photography, hill-walking and reading.