Air Vice-Marshal Simon Edwards
The Assistant Chief of the Air Staff is responsible for the strategic coherence and coordination of the Royal Air Force.
Responsibilities include the RAF Strategy, national and international engagement, and media and communications.
The Assistant Chief of the Air Staff is a member of the Air Force Board, the Air Force Board Executive, and is a Non-Executive member of the Civil Aviation Authority Board.
Air Vice-Marshal Simon Edwards was appointed Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Strategy) in 2021.
Simon is an Air Transport pilot, initially on the C-130 Hercules and latterly on the C-17 Globemaster, and was a Qualified Flying Instructor on the Shorts Tucano. As Station Commander of RAF Brize Norton he was responsible for the management of all Risks to Life involved in Air Mobility operations and military parachuting, and his staff tours in between have focused in the Joint and Capability areas at both MOD and Air Command.
Simon then worked briefly in the Cabinet Office as a policy adviser in the National Security Secretariat and completed the Higher Command and Staff Course, before taking on the role of Assistant Chief of Staff for Capability Delivery at Headquarters Air Command. In that role he completed the Major Projects Leadership Academy for high-risk, high value government projects and was the Senior Responsible Owner for a wide portfolio, including the A400M Tactical Airlifter and the United Kingdom Military Flying Training System.
Simon is married with two grown-up sons. He is an Assistant to the Court of the Worshipful Company of Coopers in the City of London, and occupies his spare time with DIY at home, or preventing his ageing riverboat from succumbing to the River Thames.
Diversity and Inclusion Statement
Diversity is our strength. It is proven that more diverse teams make better decisions, are more creative and, in our line of work, are more likely to win and win faster than non-diverse ones. Diversity is what makes us unique and invaluable and comes in many forms: race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or belief, disability, character makeup, family circumstances, wealth or not. These are just some of the very many things that make up the complex definition of ‘us’. We are all not just welcome in the Royal Air Force, but we are essential to the proper working of our organisation, to reflecting our society and to ensuring we live by the values we espouse.
Alongside diversity sits inclusion: to be diverse we must be inclusive. Inclusive of all the things that make us diverse, inclusive of our Whole Force and inclusive when we seek and find viewpoints or behaviours we ourselves find challenging. Diversity and inclusion are not values expressed by a number of our adversaries; they are part of a society we have pledged to defend with all our might and that starts with our attitudes and our individual behaviours. Join me in turning these ideas into your own personal action: ask yourself, ‘what will I do’ and embody these words.
1990 - Joined the RAF
2008 - Commanded the RAF’s C-17 Squadron
2011 - Commanded Number 904 Expeditionary Air Wing at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan
2014 - Became Station Commander of RAF Brize Norton
2016 - Gained parachutist’s wings
2017 - Graduated from the Royal College of Defence Studies
2021 - Promoted to Air Vice-Marshal as Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Strategy)