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Utah's Hill Air Force Base loses its commander to Oklahoma

Published November 30, 2012 7:03 pm

Promotion • Air Base Wing boss to become one-star general.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Hill Air Force Base is losing its commander, Col. Sarah E. Zabel, who is being promoted to brigadier general and moved to Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma.

The announcement came from the Department of Defense late Friday afternoon. Zabel was not immediately available for comment, a HAFB spokeswoman said.

Zabel, who learned she was being promoted to one-star general a year ago, will be special assistant to the commander of the Air Force Sustainment Center at Tinker, the news release said.

The promotion is significant because Hill's Ogden Air Logistics Complex now reports to that center at Tinker.

Zabel became the commander of the 75th Air Base Wing in July last year, and knew when she was tapped to become brigadier general that she would not be in the HAFB job for long because it doesn't require a commander of that rank.

At the time, she said, "I'm really awed and humbled to have this opportunity. It's a lot of responsibility."

The Air Force has more than 3,700 colonels but fewer than 140 brigadier generals.

The 75th Air Base Wing has roughly 1,500 employees but its leader is considered the base commander because it provides installation support for the logistics complex, two fighter wings and 61 other units that altogether have 24,000 active duty, civilian and contractor employees. The wing also operates the massive Utah Test and Training Range and supports the Air and Space Expeditionary Forces operations.

kmoulton@sltrib.com