Brigadier General Donald C. Bolduc has served as Commander, Special Operations Command Africa, which includes 27 countries in Africa and Europe, since April 2015.
General Bolduc was one of the first people into Afghanistan after 9/11; he rode with Hamid Karzai across Southern Afghanistan to secure Khandahar. His team was killed during a friendly fire incident in Dec 2011 (JDAM inadvertently dropped on his team). Despite his injuries, he continued his successful mission. A couple of tours later, his helicopter crashed. He has recovered from multiple combat injuries (both hips replaced, TBI) and is one of the most physically fit General officers.
His command assignments include Combined Forces Special Operations Component Command, Afghanistan; Combined Joint Special Operation Task Force, Afghanistan; 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group, Afghanistan; C Company, 2nd Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne); and HHC, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne).
He is considered the architect of Village Stability Operations in Afghanistan and has been widely cited in journals and military publications for his efforts as a special operations forces commander during myriad tours in the region.
Bolduc's combat experience is extensive and includes six deployments to Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom between 2001 and 2013; two deployments to Kuwait for Operation Desert Spring and Vigilant Warrior in 2002 and 1995; and one deployment to Iraq for Operation Desert Storm in 1991.
Special Operations Command Africa is the special operations forces component of USAFRICOM. In this role General Bolduc commands a large team in the theater special operations command responsible for special operations forces integration in Africa. With a special operations forces network of between 1,500 to 1,700 operators, analysts and support personnel forward deployed across the African continent at any given moment, SOCAFRICA is leveraged to support operations driven towards the protection of US persons and interests in Africa, assist African partners in providing for their own defense and counter the spread of violent extremist organizations on the continent.
General Bolduc's teams are threat-focused and will tend to move with their African partners to enable regional solutions and go where the threat is at the moment. In addition, our Joint Special Operations Air Component manages aircraft assets, air support and coordination across Africa. SOCAFRICA integrates special forces operations capabilities from every branch of the US military and works closely with partners in more than 20 countries.
In addition to the threats emanating from areas of instability in Africa, violent extremist organizations threats with the capability to reach beyond the African continent are a problem set the SOCAFRICA component is keenly focused on at the moment. In fact, USAFRICOM has designated SOCAFRICA as the lead component to execute the geographic combatant command's counter-VEO operations. Recent attacks in Mali, Burkina Faso, Tunisia, Somalia, Turkey and several countries in Europe have really underscored the fact that these groups are transnational, unpredictable, and dangerous.
6:00pm, cash bar reception; 6:30pm lecture, gratis. Advance reservations required by Tuesday, July 11th.