Col. Eldon Metzger is the program manager for the Navy and Marine Corps Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft Systems Program Office (PMA-263), headquartered in Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md.
Metzger, a native of Beaver, Pa. was commissioned in 1992 from Pennsylvania State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in applied mathematics. He was designated a naval aviator in 1994 and graduated from United States Naval Test Pilot School (USNTPS) in 2001.
While assigned to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 21 (HX) 21 as the UH-1N Twin Huey platform coordinator, Metzger introduced the prototype AN/AAQ-22D BRITE Star FLIR infrared system to fleet Marine units in Kuwait just prior to Operation Iraqi Freedom. As the government flight test director, he led the UH-1Y/AH-1Z Upgrades test program through the final developmental/operational test transition report and was named HX-21 Officer of the Year.
Other tours and assignments included UH-1N pilot and weapons tactics instructor with Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron(HMLA) 369 and HMLA-367 where he completed two deployments with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU); Headquarters Squadron Commanding Officer for Marine Air Group (MAG) 29; primary flight lead for HMLA-269 where he flew over 300 hours in support of ongoing operations and completed the tour as the squadron Executive Officer.
Metzger was selected to the Marine acquisition professional corps and joined Marine Light /Attack Helicopter Program Office (PMA-276) in July 2008 as the UH-1N/Y Utility Platform lead. In 2012, he was selected as a Secretary of Defense Corporate Fellow/Commandant of the Marine Corps Fellow.
Upon completion of corporate fellow program, Metzger was assigned as the Marine assistant to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development, and Acquisition), the Honorable Sean J. Stackley.
He was awarded the Marine Corps Aviation Association Acquisition Officer of the Year Award for exemplary performance in 2009. His highest award is the Meritorious Service Medal (in lieu of second award).