From Kerrison to Kandahar

Wing Commander Edwards joined the RAF through an RAF Sixth Form and Flying Scholarship directly from school and commenced his flying training at RAF Cranwell on the Tucano in 1991 and subsequently completed his fast jet training on the Hawk at RAF Chivenor. He converted to the Tornado GR1 at the Tri-national Tornado Training Establishment at RAF Cottesmore in 1995 before advancing to the Tornado Weapons Conversion Unit at RAF Lossiemouth in 1996. His first operational tour was with IX(B) Squadron at RAF Brüggen in the Strike/Attack and Suppression of Enemy Air Defences roles; this tour concluded in 1999 after his involvement in the Kosovo Air Campaign.
Posted to XV(R) Squadron at RAF Lossiemouth in 1999 he completed 18 months as an Operational Conversion Unit Instructor prior to his selection for and completion of the Qualified Weapons Instructor (QWI) Course. In 2001 he began a tour on 12(B) Squadron at RAF Lossiemouth as the QWI pilot during which he conducted missions as part of the UK Air Component during Op TELIC in March 2003.
Promoted to Squadron Leader in January 2004, he returned to XV(R) Squadron as a Flight Commander where he was responsible for Tornado GR4 post-graduate training and latterly as the Executive Officer. His first staff appointment came in 2006 when he became a Personnel Management Desk Officer at RAF Innsworth, responsible for the postings and career management of all RAF fast jet junior officer pilots.
Promoted to Wing Commander in 2008 he assumed responsibility for the policy, postings and career management of all RAF aircrew below the rank of Squadron Leader until his move to Canberra, Australia, in order to attend the Advanced Staff and Command Course (Joint) with the Australian Defence Force. He graduated from the Course in December 2009 achieving a Grad Dip in Defence Studies and was awarded the Chief of Air Force Prize.
He assumed command of XIII Squadron at RAF Marham in December 2009 during which he led his Squadron through Op HERRICK in Afghanistan and Op ELLAMY over Libya prior to its disbandment on 1 June 2011.  Wing Commander Edwards has flown over 3000 hours on fast jets, including over 2500 hours on the Tornado GR1/4, and has flown more than 100 missions over Iraq during Operation JURAL, BOLTON, RESINATE SOUTH, WARDEN and TELIC 1 as well as contributing to air operations over Kosovo, Afghanistan and Libya. He assumed his current position as Personal Staff Officer to the Chief of the Air Staff in June 2011.


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