From the Usual USAF Source:
Air University Awards First Doctorate Degree: Air University awarded its first doctorate degree Monday, seven years after the university began developing its doctoral degree program. Lt. Col. Tadd Sholtis, deputy director of public affairs at Headquarters Air Combat Command, at JB Langley-Eustis, Va., received his doctorate of philosophy in military strategy during a ceremony at Maxwell AFB, Ala. Sholtis said he had "the opportunity to think about what I do as a public affairs officer and why I do it, the larger picture of what national policy and civilian officials faced when discussing the US strategy in Afghanistan." Hank Dasinger, AU chief of academic affairs, said the doctoral program "reinforces the idea that we are a military school and a university," while allowing airmen to pursue their PhDs without "being away from your functional areas." Only one percent of a year group is admitted to the School of Advanced Air and Space Studies class, which makes them eligible for the doctorate program, said Bruce Murphy, vice president for academic affairs. "We need educated people at high levels, and this program keeps them current in their fields," said Murphy.
I'm not biased against higher education, per se, and I think graduate degrees for military professionals are good things... in areas like logistics, engineering, and even military history. But I'm a lil bit nonplussed at "doctorate of philosophy in military strategy" and most especially how said philosophy and/or strategy relates to Public Affairs. That seems a bit much. Or mebbe I'm just thick; I was enlisted, after all, and was reminded quite often during my career that I wasn't paid to think.
While we're on about it... There might have been professional public affairs officers back in my day but I'm betting those guys were only found at the Numbered Air Force level or above; most of the PAOs I knew were additional-duty types. Hell, I was one myself at the squadron level, as a Master Sergeant. And now we have professional spin-meisters with doctorates. In the Air Force!