Civil Air Patrol (CAP) Col. David L. Roberts assumed command of CAP’s Oklahoma Wing in a change-of-command ceremony on Saturday, July 22 at Tinker Air Force Base.

Roberts replaces Col. Dale E. Newell, who filled the position for the past 27 months. Newell now will serve on CAP’s Board of Governors.

CAP is a congressionally charted organization with three primary missions – Emergency Services, Cadet Programs, and Aerospace Education. When performing missions assigned by 1st Air Force, CAP is deemed to be an auxiliary of the United States Air Force.

“It is an amazing honor to be selected to lead the nearly 800 volunteer members of the Oklahoma Wing,” said Roberts. “They epitomize the ‘Oklahoma Standard’ in everything they do and demonstrate our organization’s core values of integrity, volunteer service, excellence and respect.”

Prior to his current assignment Roberts served as the Vice Commander, Director of Emergency Services, and Director of Personnel for Oklahoma Wing.

Roberts came to Oklahoma Wing from the Missouri Wing in 2006 by chartering the Grove Composite Squadron and served as its commander until 2012.

His CAP background includes service in various staff assignments in Missouri and Oklahoma at the unit, group and wing levels.

He has 27 emergency services qualifications and has served in search and rescue, counterdrug and homeland security missions. He has a CAP Pilot aeronautical rating and 12 master ratings and five senior ratings in various Civil Air Patrol specialty tracks.

Roberts was born in California, but has lived in Oklahoma for the past 50 years.

A 1977 graduate of Grove High School, he attended Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College, Northeastern State University and Andersonville Baptist Seminary.

He holds an associate’s degree in criminal justice, a bachelor’s degree in history, a master's degree in theology, and a doctorate in theology.

Roberts finished his 36th year in public education and retired in May 2017. He is employed part-time by Grove Public Schools as the safety director for the school district.

He is an ordained deacon and licensed minister and has served as Chairman of Deacons at First Baptist Church for more than 20 years.

Roberts and his wife Becky reside in Grove. They have three adult children and one grandchild.

Did You Know?

Civil Air Patrol, the longtime all-volunteer U.S. Air Force auxiliary, is the newest member of the Air Force’s Total Force.

In this role, CAP operates a fleet of 560 aircraft, performs about 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and is credited by the AFRCC with saving an average of 80 lives annually.

CAP’s 57,000 members also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies.

CAP also plays a leading role in aerospace/STEM education, and its members serve as mentors to 24,000 young people participating in CAP’s Cadet Programs.

For more information, persons interested may visit