Making a Difference at Mach 2
What does it take and what is it like to be an Experimental Fighter Test Pilot? Lt Col Tucker “Cinco” Hamilton is an Experimental Fighter Test Pilot for the United States Air Force. He shares his personal stories including major life threatening aircraft accidents, close saves, combat flying revelations, serendipitous opportunities testing first of its kind technology, flying over 30 aircraft from a zeppelin to a MiG-15 to an A-10, and managing the Joint Strike Fighter Developmental Test program for all three services. Through these experiences you will learn not just what a Test Pilot does, but also gain encouragement through his lessons learned on how to make a difference in your local communities.
Lt Col Tucker “Cinco” Hamilton started his Air Force career as an operational F-15C pilot. He supported multiple Red Flag Exercises and real world Operation Noble Eagle missions where he protected the President of the United States; at times escorting Air Force One. He then served as an Air Liaison Officer in Germany where he was the director of operations for a key command and control squadron. While serving in Germany he was hand-selected to be the initial cadre for the first MC-12 squadron in Afghanistan; heralding in the Air Force’s first tactical Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance aircraft. He served as the Chief Instructor for 200+ aircrew and accumulated over 400 combat hours directly supporting ground forces. After his time in the MC-12 he attended the USAF Test Pilot School (TPS) where he flew 30 different aircraft, wrote 38 technical reports, and took part in the first Automatic Air Collision Avoidance System testing. After TPS graduation he became an F-15C and F-15E Instructor Experimental Test Pilot and the Technical Director for the Operational Flight Program Combined Test Force at Eglin AFB, FL. He was the lead test pilot on 11 test programs; supporting the newest software, systems, and weapons for the 450+ F-15 fleet. He then served at the Pentagon as the Developmental Test & Evaluation (DT&E) Lead for the Joint Strike Fighter, F-35; overseeing the entire DT&E effort for the U.S. Air Force, Navy, and Marines. He managed an 18 test-aircraft fleet of specially equipped F-35s across multiple operating locations with a $3B budget. After his F-35 work in D.C. he transitioned to Edwards AFB, CA where he currently flies the F-35 as the Developmental Test Director of Operations. Cinco has received numerous accolades and awards, the most recent being his recognition by the U.S. Junior Chamber as a Ten Outstanding Young American.
Lt Col Hamilton has a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Colorado (’02), an M.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Tennessee (’09), and an M.S. in Flight Test Engineering from the USAF Test Pilot School (’12).
Cinco has been heavily involved with AIAA, currently chairing the K-12 STEM Committee. Coupled with his AIAA STEM outreach work he started a non-profit STEM outreach organization, STEM-ED, where he connects teachers to STEM volunteers. Cinco currently lives in California with his wife and four young children.
Please RSVP by 3/15/17 because prices will go up by $5 after that day!
The dinner will be buffet style.