An Oklahoman by choice for the last 24 years, Jay T. Edwards is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and holds Master's degrees in Aeronautical Engineering from Texas A&M University and Public Administration from George Washington University. He spent 28 years in the Air Force, retiring as the Commanding General of the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center at Tinker Air Force Base.
Edwards flew 252 combat missions in F-100s in Vietnam earning the Silver Star, Bronze Star, three Distinguished Flying Crosses and fifteen Air Medals. His decorations include the nation's highest peacetime award, the Distinguished Service Medal, awarded twice, and the Legion of Merit. During his career, he served as a fighter pilot, a research engineer, a logistician and a project manager for new weapon systems.
Since leaving the Air Force, he has served as the founding Executive Director of the University of Oklahoma Energy Center, the President of CMI Corporation, the General Administrator of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, and President of the Aeronautical Science Technology Education Center and Charter School. Edwards' last position was as Executive Director of the Oklahoma Space Industry Development Authority, where he led the work necessary to bring the space industry to Oklahoma by pioneering the development of a spaceport for space operations and attracting companies to the State. In each of these leadership positions, he brought a sense of teamwork, accountability and service to others. He also has been active in local civic affairs serving on the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, Oklahoma State Fair Board, and Air Space Museum and Hall of Fame Board, Kirkpatrick Center Board, Boy Scouts Last Frontier Council, and Co-Chairman of the Veterans War Memorial, among others.