Current as of Aug 18

Mississippi State University

Lieutenant Colonel Joseph J. Cassidy II

Joseph Cassidy

Lieutenant Colonel Cassidy is the Commander of Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) Detachment 425 and serves as the Professor of Aerospace Studies at Mississippi State University. As commander, he leads an 80 member active duty and civilian team responsible for recruiting, training, motivating, education, and evaluation of Mississippi State University’s Air Force officer candidates. Additionally, he supports cross-town universities which include, Mississippi University for Women and East Mississippi Community College. He is the senior Air Force officer on campus with dual responsibilities as detachment commander and Chairman of the Department of Aerospace Studies. Lieutenant Colonel Cassidy is responsible for determining who is accepted, trained, and ultimately commissioned as an officer in the United States Air Force. His previous assignment was at Headquarters United States Special Operations Command, where he served numerous leadership roles, to support a 66 thousand-strong unified combatant command Special Operations Force in executing their unique world-wide missions. Throughout his career, he’s led forces to support Operations ENDURING FREEDOM, IRAQI FREEDOM, and ODYSSEY DAWN in planning, delivery, and execution of air and space combat power against enemy combatants in support of national objectives. He is a Space Weapons Officer with background in space operations planning and integration and leveraged this expertise to support combatant commander objectives, military operations and exercises in CENTCOM, EUCOM, PACOM, SOUTHCOM, AFRICOM, NORTHCOM, USSTRATCOM, and USSOCOM.

Lt Col Cassidy entered the Air Force in 1996 through the AFROTC program at Troy State University, Troy Alabama. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree of Science in Psychology from Troy State University and a Master’s Degree of Aeronautical Science in Human Factors from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.


  • 1996 Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Troy State University, Troy AL
  • 2001 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base AL
  • 2005 United States Air Force Weapons School, Nellis Air Force Base NV
  • 2007 National Security Space Institute - Space 200, Colorado Springs CO
  • 2008 Air Command and Staff College by correspondence
  • 2010 National Security Space Institute - Space 300, Colorado Springs CO
  • 2010 Master of Aeronautical Science in Human Factors, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach FL
  • 2014 Joint Forces Staff College – Joint Professional Military Education
  • 2016 Air War College by correspondence 


  • June 1996 - September 1996
    Undergraduate Space and Missile Training, Vandenberg Air Force Base CA
  • September 1996 - March 1997
    Initial Qualification Training – Minuteman III, Vandenberg Air Force Base CA
  • March 1997 - June 1998
    Deputy Missile Combat Crew Commander, 741st Missile Squadron, Minot Air Force Base, ND
  • June 1998 - November 1998
    Instructor, 91st Operations Support Squadron, Minot Air Force Base, ND
  • November 1998 - April 2001
    Assistant Flight CDR/Instructor, 741st Missile Squadron, Minot Air Force Base ND
  • April 2001 - July 2005
    Assistant Director of Operations, 82d Aerial Targets Squadron, Tyndall Air Force Base FL
  • July 2005 - October 2008
    Chief Standardization/Evaluation and Special Technical Operations, 609th Air and Space Operations Center, Shaw Air Force Base, SC
  • October 2008 - December 2011
    Chief Strategy Plans Team, 614th Air and Space Operations Center, Vandenberg, AFB, CA
  • December 2011 - July 2015
    Chief Space Operations and Deputy Chief Cyber, Electronic Warfare, and Space Operations Branch, Information Operations Division, HQ USSOCOM, MacDill Air Force Base, FL
  • July 2015 - Present
    Commander and Professor of Aerospace Studies, Air Force ROTC Detachment 425, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS

Major Awards and Decorations

  • Defense Meritorious Service Medal
  • Meritorious Service Medal
  • Air Force Commendation Medal
  • Joint Service Achievement Medal
  • Air Force Achievement Medal
  • Combat Readiness Medal
  • National Defense Service Medal
  • Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
  • Air and Space Campaign Medal
  • Nuclear Deterrence Operations Service Medal

Other Achievements

  • American Academy for Distinguished Graduates, 1996
  • National Honor Society in Psychology (Psi Chi), 1996 
  • Air Force Space Command Crewmember Excellence Award, 1998
  • Superior Performer- WILLIAM TELL 50th Anniversary Air-to Air Weapons Meet, 2004
  • AFROTC “2016 Team Excellence Award”, awarded 2017 

Effective Dates of Promotion

  • Second Lieutenant May 29, 1996
  • First Lieutenant May 29, 1998
  • Captain May 29, 2000
  • Major June 1, 2006
  • Lieutenant Colonel September 1, 2011

(Current as of July 2015)