Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services

Dr. (Col Ret.) Samantha A. Weeks, USAF


Results-driven executive with 23 years of military service culminating in four years of experience at the CEO-level leading large military organizations to success.  Transitioned seamlessly to the public sector as a results-proven change leader as the Chief Transformation Officer at a $7B public company.


  • Transformational leader who successfully connects the mission, goals, objectives, with the people as the integral part of change, maturation, and evolution.
  • Leadership focused on individual and collective strategic development, goal-accomplishment, efficiency and sustainability.
  • Proven management, delegation, communication and people skills including a PhD in leadership development and certification in executive coaching.
  • Relationship builder creating strategic partnerships for achievement of long-term results and success.
  • Diverse experience across both government, private, and public sectors, as well as domestic and international environments..
  • Forward thinking, agile, and determined teammate who cultivates strong teams as a leader and follower.


Mission Director, Science & Research, Polaris Dawn

Nov 2021 – Present

  • Responsible for the Science and Research for the upcoming SpaceX collaborated launch with the Polaris Program, an all-commercial astronaut crew.

Chief Transformation Officer, Shift4 Payments

July 2022 – February 2024

Colorado Springs, CO

Key Responsibilities and Achievements

  • Responsible for the design, develop, and maturation of the corporate culture to include activities involving the development of human capital and strategic processes to ensure organizational efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Provides direction and alignment for human resources, learning & development, program management, and corporate quality group for a multi-billion dollar payments-processing company.
    • Achieved 29% revenue growth and 15% net income increase during her leadership as the Chief Transformation Officer.
  • Designs and influences change throughout the organization intended to promote organization, efficiency, scalability, and effectiveness.
    • Flawlessly led the integration of eight (8) integrations from local to global acquisitions.
  • Utilizes change management principles, processes and tools to enable financial and operational results.

Consultant, Raytheon Technologies

July 2021 – November 2022

Colorado Springs, CO

Key Responsibilities

  • Subject Matter Expert providing insight, perspective, experience into female urinary relief requirements for female military aircrew. Assists in the understanding of needs and development of solutions for the Department of Defense’s efforts to properly and adequately support the female aircrew member to safely, effectively and in a health-conscious manner conduct their aerial operations and mission.

Graduate Faculty, Valdosta State University

May 2021 – September 2022

Colorado Springs, CO

Key Responsibilities

  • Serves on dissertation committees in Valdosta State University’s Political Science Department.
  • Current assignment: Committee member for Colonel Danielle Willis’, Doctor of Public Administration dissertation: Using a Cognitive Model to Identify and Mitigate Perceptions of Toxic Leadership, for the United States Air Force.

Vice President, Corporate Transformation, Shift4 Payments

April 2021 – July 2022

Colorado Springs, CO

Key Responsibilities

  • Designs and influences change throughout the organization intended to promote organization, efficiency, scalability, and effectiveness
  • Utilize change management principles, processes and tools to focus on driving financial and operational results
  • Oversee strategic processes for Shift4 to ensure organizational effectiveness and efficiency

Senior Manager, Business Development, Integrated Weapons Systems, Collins Aerospace

July 2020 – April 2021

Colorado Springs, CO

Key Responsibilities

  • Utilizes expertise of product, market, and business trends in Integrated Weapons Systems to develop strategic growth opportunities for Collins Aerospace.
  • In only four months, recognized with an Excellence Award for innovative ideas for strategic development, as well as the One Badge Award for her attentiveness across multiple business units developing company-wide profitability opportunities.

Wing Commander (CEO), United States Air Force

August 2018 – May 2020

14th Flying Training Wing

Columbus Air Force Base, MS

Key Responsibilities

  • Leads Air Force’s largest and most diverse pilot training base, producing one-third of all new Air Force pilots annually.
  • Responsible for 2,600 military and civilian personnel, $150 million annual budget, $2.3 billion in capital assets and 244 military aircraft across two states.
  • Directs functions of all strategic planning and execution of operations, medical, logistics, and maintenance oversight.
  • Responsible for coordination with national, state, and locally elected officials as well as business leaders on issues for the base mission with a $429 million economic impact to the region.
  • Responsible for local military-community outreach programs to include speaking engagements, economic councils, partnership programs, local law enforcement coordination, and other military-civic matters.
  • Directs the Air Force's only Chief of Staff Aviation Leadership Program, training pilots from allied nations in tailored programs for both flying and leadership skills.Coordinates with host-nation senior liaison officers.
  • Transformed a flat base culture with a successful re-focus on accountability, transparency, and openness.
  • Overhauled staffs and underperforming functions to promote operational effectiveness, efficiency and flexibility.
  • Re-negotiated $288 million military maintenance contract in 7 months, 50% faster than average contract realities.

Group Commander (CEO), United States Air Force


57th Adversary Training Group

Nellis Air Force Base, NV

Key Responsibilities

  • Led the Air Force’s only adversary tactics program for air defense, air, space and cyberspace domains to support Combatant Commander requirements for national defense.
  • Responsible for 300 Total-Force personnel (Active Duty, Air National Guard, and Air Force Reserve Forces) across 3 states, $377 million in assets, $52 million annual operating budget.
  • Directed 7 military squadrons for flight, space, cyber, air defense and support operations.
  • Ensured group's mission supported training requirements across the entirety of the Department of Defense.

Key Accomplishments

  • Developed, operated, and managed the first-ever multi-year contract, $288 million, with defense contractor ensuring long-term success for realistic and relevant training; 60% faster than average contract realities.
  • Spearheaded effort for the Air Force's newest 5th generation fighter aircraft, the F-35, being selected as the next adversary training aircraft to ensure military preparedness and readiness for a peer competitor environment.

Executive Assistant to the Commander

North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and United States Northern Command


Peterson Air Force Base, CO

  • Assisted and advised on U.S. strategic defense issues across the North American continent with our Canadian, Mexican, and Bahamian allies.

Air Force Fellow

Office of the Deputy Secretary of Defense and Secretary of the Air Force, Legislative Liaison


The Pentagon

  • Managed portfolio of defense programs for the Deputy Secretary of Defense.
  • Liaison between Congress and Air Force for annual authorization of all fighter, trainer and weapons programs, to include the F-22A, F-35 and T-7 trainer. Developed and executed strategy for presenting programs to Congress. Prepared senior leadership for testimony before Congress. Had daily contact with members of congress, professional staff members, and highest-level Department of Defense and Air Force leadership.

Air Force Aerial Demonstration Squadron, The Thunderbirds


Nellis Air Force Base, NV

  • Represented the U.S., nationally and internationally, as the first-female solo demonstration pilot on any country’s national aerial demonstration team.


International Coaching Federation (ICF) - Associate Certified Coach (ACC)

January 2024

Achieved standards and requirements to expertly provide executive coaching with commitment to strongest principles and ethical behavior.

Harvard Business School Executive Education

Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

Graduation: May 2022

Relevant Coursework: Custom-tailored executive education program to engage leaders in a unique combination of classroom work, case-study discussion, and peer advice.  The program looks to hone Fellows’ ability to think strategically in areas including negotiation, organizational transformation, the management of innovation and services, and global affairs.  Program also includes a peer Board of Advisor group to work through business challenges to evolve and elevate experience and thinking.

Executive and Professional Coaching Certification

University of Texas, Dallas, TX

ICF Accredited Coaching Training Program (ACTP)

Graduated January 2022

Relevant Coursework:  The educational program and certificate incorporates a thorough study of the ICF Core Competencies and skill building under the direction of highly-qualified ICF mentors. Evidence-based methods and models along with foundational psychological theories to assist people's development or change efforts.

Doctor of Philosophy in Military Strategy (Leader and Leadership Development)

Air University, Maxwell Air Force Base, AL

Graduation:  2019

Title: Peering into Command: Leaders and Leadership for Air Force Squadrons

Relevant Coursework:  The Lorenz Fellowship:  dissertation on how the Air Force trains mid-level managers (squadron commanders) and strategies to improve this process.  Recommendations were implemented in Air Force-wide training programs.  Cited in the RAND Study, “Improving the Effectiveness of Air Force Squadron Commanders,” May 2018.

Women Leading Global Change Program

INSEAD, Fontainebleau, France

Graduation: February 2020

Relevant Coursework: Designed environment to bring women executives together in a forum to focus on the unique challenges’ women encounter at the senior executive level.  The program looks into the cutting-edge ideas about leadership, develops greater confidence and understanding about personal leadership styles and creates a network of today’s senior women leaders, empowering them to take bold steps in their careers and aim for the top.

National Security Management Studies

Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY

Graduation:  2019

Relevant Coursework:  National Security Studies is fully accredited executive development for senior civilian and military executives in both public and private sectors.  The program includes topics of foreign policy, intelligence, terrorism/counterterrorism, management, leadership, homeland security, global economics, and an array of current challenges facing the nation.

Master of Philosophy in Military Strategy

School of Advanced Air and Space Studies (SAASS)

Air University, Maxwell Air Force Base, AL

Graduation:  2011

Relevant Coursework: SAASS is an advanced graduate school focused on developing strategists through a curriculum in the art and science of air, space, and cyberspace power for the Air Force and nation.  Emphasis is placed on the strategic nexus of military and political to strategically think, problem solve, and skillfully engage on the dynamics of global military and political issues.

Master of Human Relations

University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK

Graduation:  2005

Relevant Coursework: A multidisciplinary field of study and professional practice that combines theoretical perspectives from the social sciences and humanities, organizational studies, and multicultural studies.

Bachelor of Science in Biology

United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, CO

Graduation:  1997


Defense Advisory Committee On Women In The Services (DACOWITS)

Committee Member, 2022 - Present

  • DACOWITS gathers information from multiple sources, including briefings and written responses from the Defense Department, Service-level military representatives, and subject matter experts. The Committee collects qualitative data from focus groups and interactions with Service members during installation visits. Additionally, the Committee examines peer-reviewed literature. Based upon the data collected and analyzed, the Committee submits recommendations and continuing concerns to the Secretary of Defense via a comprehensive annual report.

International Women’s Forum (IWF)

Leadership Foundation Fellow, 2019-2022

  • One of 38 Fellows selected from 11 countries in the program's 25th year, receiving customized leadership training for female executives on path to the corporate suite.Seminars at Harvard Business School, INSEAD graduate business school (Fontainebleau, France campus), and the IWF international conference. National Aeronautic Association, 2018
  • Annual achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America.Recognized for efforts on the team developing the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System life-saving technology for the Air Force F-35 fleet.

Robert J. Collier Trophy recipient

National Aeronautic Association, 2018

  • Annual achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America.Recognized for efforts on the team developing the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System life-saving technology for the Air Force F-35 fleet.
Dr. (Col Ret.) Samantha A. Weeks, USAF

Employment and Integration Subcommittee Member