In the Aug. 25 Loudoun Extra, the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base was incorrectly described as the largest Air Force base in the United States. The largest Air Force base in the U.S. is Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. (Published 9/4/2005)
Keith W. Meurlin, who recently retired as manager of Dulles International Airport, was called to active duty in the Air Force in July.
Meurlin, 55, is one of only 25 major generals in the Air Force Reserve, the highest rank. He was called to duty July 11 as acting vice commander of Air Force Materiel Command at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base outside Dayton, Ohio, the largest Air Force base in the United States.
He was responsible for the maintenance and repair of, among other things, F-15 and F-16 fighter aircraft, B-1 bombers, tankers and satellite systems. "We sustain, keep them flying, all the tankers, B-1s," Meurlin said.
Meurlin was assigned to the post after the previous commander retired and while the military sought a replacement. He is scheduled to return home to Herndon on Monday.
Meurlin retired March 31 after 28 years at Dulles Airport. During his tenure, he oversaw the addition of passenger terminals, the expansion of cargo facilities and the installation of the airport's ramp control tower, where airline ramp controllers coordinate arrivals and departures as planes taxi to and from gates.
He managed a $93 million budget and oversaw 450 employees.
Meurlin joined the Air Force in 1972 and underwent pilot training at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia.
As a reservist, he directed maintenance and logistics for initial combat during Operation Iraqi Freedom and helped with the mobilization of reservists after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. "We needed to bring them on board as fast as we could," he said Tuesday in a telephone interview.
Meurlin was recently elected to Middleburg Financial Corp.'s board of directors and has been involved on the boards of the Reston Chamber of Commerce, the Loudoun Chamber of Commerce and the United Way of Loudoun County. In 2000, he received Loudoun's Rotary Citizen of the Year award.
He has a degree in political science from the University of Vermont and a degree in systems management from the University of Southern California.