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Deputy Commander, U.S. Northern Command and Vice Commander, U.S. Element, North American Aerospace Defense Command

Lieutenant General Thomas Carden is the Deputy Commander, U.S. Northern Command, and Vice Commander, U.S. Element, North American Aerospace Defense Command at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado. As Deputy Commander, Lieutenant General Carden assists the Combatant Commander in anticipating, preparing for and responding to threats against North America and within Northern Command’s assigned area of responsibility. Additionally, he provides oversight of U.S. Northern Command’s mission to provide Defense Support of Civil Authorities.

Lieutenant General Carden's other general officer level assignments include duties as The Adjutant General, Georgia National Guard, Deputy Commanding General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s Multinational Division Southeast headquartered in Bucharest, Romania, and Assistant Adjutant General, Georgia National Guard headquartered in Marietta, Georgia. 

Lieutenant General Carden’s previous assignments include chief of staff, deputy chief of staff for operations, and deputy chief of staff for personnel. He also commanded the 560th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, Georgia Army National Guard. Lieutenant General Carden deployed to Iraq with the 48th Infantry Brigade Combat Team during Operation Iraqi Freedom, and he deployed to Bosnia and Herzegovina during Operation Joint Forge. Lieutenant General Carden has been part of numerous domestic response operations during his service in the Georgia National Guard.

Lieutenant General Carden was commissioned in 1989 through Officers Candidate School. His military education includes the Infantry Officer Basic and Advance Courses, the Combined Arms Services Staff School, the Command and General Staff College, the Army War College, the Defense Support to Civil Authorities (DSCA) Course, the National Defense University's CAPSTONE Course, the USNORTHCOM Joint Task Force Commanders Course, and Harvard University’s National & International Security Seminar. He earned a Master of Arts in Human Resource Management from Webster University and a Master of Science in Strategic Studies from the US Army War College.

Lieutenant General Carden’s military awards and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, the Combat Infantry Badge, and the Parachutist Badge.

He and Charlene, his wife of 35 years, reside on Peterson Space Force Base.