Lt. Col. Breea Lisko, a decorated meteorologist with the United States Air Force and Department of Defense policy advisor, received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Iowa State University Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences at a ceremony on Thursday, Oct. 21. The award recognizes outstanding alumni from the Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Iowa State.
Lisko, a resident of Alexandria, Virginia, serves as a strategic integration and policy advisor for the Department of Defense, providing insight to department and senior staff on interdepartmental initiatives that impact transformational technology. She also engages and shapes congressional and intelligence community senior leader discussions on policy implications related to emerging technology.
Lisko served as both commander and operations officer for the 30th Operations Support Squadron and commanded a specialized flight of airmen charged with conducting operations to United States Transportation Command, Air Mobility Command and the Air Operations Center to support global mobility operations.
While deployed to Afghanistan, Lisko served dual roles as the joint meteorological and oceanographic officer for United States Forces-Afghanistan and as NATO chief of meteorological operations for Operation RESOLUTE SUPPORT. Additionally, she served as chief, climate plans and executive officer to the director of weather and recently served as chief, Air Force Operations Group Weather Branch.
Lisko is the recipient of numerous commendations and awards, including the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Aerial Achievement Medal, the Joint Service Commendation Medal and the Air Force Commendation Medal.
Lisko earned a bachelor of science degree in meteorology from Iowa State in 2000. Upon graduation, she earned her commission in the United States Air Force as a member of the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program.
When asked to describe the value of her ISU degree towards her life or carreer, Lt. Col. Lisko stated:
“Whether helping the United States Space Force launch satellites into orbit, forecasting weather for Air Force and Army air and ground missions, or keeping Department of Defense leaders apprised of global environmental impacts to their operations, the skills and abilities I developed as a meteorology student at Iowa State are fundamental to my success in safeguarding our military warriors.”