Colonel Stephen J. Maher, a Slingerlands resident, retires from New York Air National Guard after over 30 years of service
New York Air National Guard Colonel Stephen J. Maher, a Slingerlands resident, has retired from the military after serving over 30 years of service during a retirement ceremony held at the Joint Forces Headquarters, New York Air National Guard (ANG) in Latham, New York, October 14.
Maher began his military career in 1987 as a commissioned officer in the United States Navy. During his time with the navy, he deployed throughout the Middle East in support of Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. Following his naval service, he joined the New York State Air National Guard in 1996 where he most recently served as the Staff Judge Advocate for the New York State Air National Guard.
As the Staff Judge Advocate, Maher was the senior legal advisor to The Adjutant General of New York and the ANG commanders of the five wings and the Eastern Air Defense Sector.
He is a 1979 graduate of Holland Patent Central High School and earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1983 from Hobart College in Geneva, New York. Maher went on to earn his law degree from Albany Law School and his master's degree from the University of Rhode Island.
From 1987 until 1996, Maher served with the United States Navy in various roles including Defense Council, Trail Counsel, and Staff Judge Advocate.
Upon entering the New York Air National Guard in 1996, he served as the Deputy Staff Judge Advocate while assigned to 109th Airlift Wing, Stratton Air National Guard Base in Schenectady. Throughout the remainder of his Air National Guard career, Maher provided legal advice and support while serving as the Air Operations Judge Advocate at Tyndall Air Force Base (AFB), Prosecutor for the Office of Military Commissions Prosecution Team at the Pentagon, Staff Judge Advocate at New York's Joint Force Headquarters, Air National Guard Assistant Judge Advocate at Tyndall AFB, and the Air National Guard Assistant Judge Advocate at Lackland AFB. During his service with the ANG, he deployed in support Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Noble Eagle and Operation Deep Freeze.
His military awards and decorations include the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, National Defense Service Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal,
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Air Force Overseas Ribbon Short, Navy and Marine Corps Overseas Service Ribbon, Air Force Longevity Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with 3 "M" Devices, Navy Pistol Shot Medal, Kuwait Liberation Medal Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the Kuwait Liberation Government of Kuwait Medal.
In his civilian life, Maher is Deputy Commissioner and Chief of Investigations with the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) Office of Special Investigations where he oversees 200 investigators in statewide criminal and administrative cases involving narcotics, sex crimes, criminal intelligence, threats, fugitive apprehensions, internal affairs, and a variety of other areas in a system serving more than 120,000 people. He was formerly a deputy bureau chief with the New York Attorney General's Criminal Enforcement and Financial Crimes Bureau.
Maher is also an adjunct professor at Utica College where he teaches in the cyber-security graduate program.
Maher is the son of New Hartford resident James Maher and the late Sandra Maher. He has three children Jimmy, Nate and Libby.