Colonel Kristina L. Richardson joined the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security in July 2021 as a Senior Service College Military Fellow. A native of Southern California, Col.Richardson entered the Army in 1995 as a cadet at the United States Military Academy at West Point. She graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1999, making her the first in her family to graduate from college and commission into the Army.
Col. Richardson has served most of her Army career as a combat helicopter pilot flying the UH60 Blackhawk and UH72 Lakota helicopters. She transitioned later in her military career to duty as an operations research/systems analysis functional area (FA49 ORSA).
Her experience in the Asia-Pacific region includes serving in combat aviation units in both the Republic of Korea and Hawaii. Additionally, her most recent position was with U.S. Army Pacific Command (USARPAC) as the Director of the Commander’s Initiatives Group. This fellowship is her third assignment in Hawaii.
Col. Richardson’s military highlights include flying combat missions and commanding a helicopter company in the 25th Combat Aviation Brigade in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, serving as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Systems Engineering at West Point, providing critical analytical support to the Commanding General of U.S. Army Special Operations Command (USASOC), and the strategic advisor to the Commanding General of U.S. Army Pacific Command (USARPAC).
Col. Richardson received a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering from the United States Military Academy in 1999. She earned a Master of Science in Engineering and Management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2009. Additionally, she obtained a Master of Science in Systems Architecting and Engineering from the University of Southern California (USC) in 2017. She is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Systems Architecting and Engineering from the University of Southern California (USC).