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Monday, June 1, 2009

Hometown News: Col. Dent retires, was Air University Staff Judge Advocate

Col. Joseph F. Dent has retired from the Air Force after 30 years.

He was the Air University Staff Judge Advocate at Maxwell Air Force Base.

As the staff judge advocate, he served as the principal adviser to the commander, commandants of various Air University schools and colleges, and staff members on all legal matters involving military justice, labor, administrative, personnel, fiscal and environmental law for more than 50,000 resident and 120,000 non-resident officer, enlisted and civilian members who are trained, educated, and commissioned annually under the oversight of Air University.

Additionally, he served the staff judge advocate at general courts-martial convening authority and major command levels.

Dent began his military career in 1979 when he graduated from the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. He graduated from undergraduate pilot training school as a rated F-15 aircraft fighter pilot.

Dent served at military installations in Florida, Arizona, Virginia, the Philippines, Nevada, Alabama, Washington, D.C., and Hawaii. He has held positions ranging from area defense counsel and circuit defense counsel to staff judge advocate.

His military decorations include the Legion of Merit Medal and six Meritorious Service Medals.

His wife, Janet, is the daughter of Mildred Heath of Birmingham. The Dents live in Montgomery.

He is a 1975 graduate of Cocoa Beach High School, Fla. and earned a law degree in 1987 from the College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Va.

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I grew up in the military. Mom was an Air Force nurse for a few years, dad was a navigator on B-52s, among other things. One grandfather served in World War II, uncle is retired Navy, other grandfather and great-uncle served in Korea and a cousin is currently serving in the Marine Corps. Currently, I'm the military reporter for the Great Falls Tribune in Montana. Previously, 


As a military kids, we moved all over. As an adult, I've traveled all over and moved for work. But now, I'm putting down roots in Montana with my boyfriend. We just bought a house and are slowly but surely making it our home. We have more land that we know what to do with at the moment. Now we're getting a garden started, tearing down walls and having loads of fun at what we call the Homestead.

In a part life, I did PR for the guy who built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, social media for the National Museum of Health and Medicine, before that, edited two military technology magazines for a publishing group in the DC area and before that, I was the military reporter (among other things) at the Montgomery Advertiser, covering Maxwell Air Force Base, the Alabama National Guard, veterans and anything else military related in the area. And in between all of that, I leave town, preferably the country, whenever possible. It all started when I spent a semester in New Zealand.

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