Komatsu takes command of 212 RQS Published Aug. 27, 2015 By Capt. John Callahan 176th Wing Public Affairs JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska -- Lt. Col. Matthew Komatsu assumed command of the Alaska Air National Guard's 212th Rescue Squadron in a ceremony at the Guard's pararescue facility here Aug. 27. A combat rescue officer, Komatsu previously served as the squadron's director of operations. He has been a member of the Alaska Air National Guard since 2011. He is a veteran of multiple deployments to the Middle East, and his awards include a Bronze Star Medal with Valor. Komatsu said that as commander, two of his areas of focus will be the State Partnership for Peace Program, through which Alaska and partner nation Mongolia work to improve cooperation and coordination; and the Preservation of the Force and Family initiative, a U.S. Special Operations Command program to holistically address and improve the well-being of special operations forces and their families. Komatsu took over from the previous commander, Lt. Col. Joseph Conroy, who had served in that role since 2011. During the ceremony, Conroy was also presented with a Meritorious Service Medal (fourth oak-leaf cluster).