Order of the Sword induction ceremony scheduled for OSI commander

  • Published
  • By James C. Dillard
  • OSI Public Affairs
Brig. Gen. Kevin J. Jacobsen, Air Force Office of Special Investigations commander, will be inducted into the Order of the Sword at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling, Washington, D.C., July 8.

Jacobsen will be the fifth person from OSI to be inducted into the Order of the Sword since the order was established in OSI on June 14, 1985.

The Air Force's Order of the Sword was founded by the enlisted force to recognize and honor military senior officers and civilian equivalents, for significant contributions to the welfare and prestige of the Air Force enlisted corps, mission effectiveness as well as the overall military establishment.

When Jacobsen was notified of his selection to the order, he expressed his heartfelt gratitude at OSI headquarters in Quantico, Va., "This means so much to me because of who it's coming from. This will be one of those memories I cherish for the rest of my life. I'm beyond humbled that OSI's enlisted force would consider me for such a distinguished recognition."

General Jacobsen entered the Air Force in 1980 as a graduate of Air Force ROTC program at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania. He has spent the majority of his career as a special agent of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations where he has conducted and supervised felony-level criminal, fraud, and counterintelligence investigations and operations.

He has commanded at the detachment, squadron and wing levels, and has led combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. General Jacobsen has also served on the Joint Staff and in the Office of the Secretary of Defense at the Pentagon. Prior to his current assignment, he served as the Director, Special Investigations, Office of the Inspector General, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, Washington, D.C. He led the directorate in developing and implementing all Air Force level plans and policies concerning criminal investigations and counterintelligence operations.

The Order of the Sword is patterned after two orders of chivalry founded during the Middle Ages in Europe, the Royal Order of the Sword and the Swedish Military Order of the Sword, both of which are still in existence. The noncommissioned officer corps was established early in the twelfth century.

In 1522, King Gustavus I of Sweden bid his commissioned noblemen to appoint officers to serve him. The people became noncommissioned officers who would honor their leader and pledge their loyalty by ceremoniously presenting him with a sword. The sword, a symbol of truth, justice, and power rightfully used, served as a token for all to see and know that here was a leader.

This tradition came to the United States as early as the Revolutionary War, and after years in dormancy, was revived in the 1860s when Gen. Robert E. Lee was presented a sword by his command.