NRO Defines its USAF Connection:

The new head of the National Reconnaissance Office—former CIA science and technology official Donald Kerr—told lawmakers that the Air Force and the NRO have a “cooperative and collaborative partnership” that leverages each other’s expertise and resources. Kerr added, “However, space is our common operating environment, not our mission.” Some lawmakers, including Rep. Terry Everett, armed services strategic forces subcommittee head, worried last year when DOD severed the formal USAF-NRO leadership linkage that one or both space programs would suffer. The Air Force chose to establish a link of sorts by creating a new position for Kerr—that of Assistant to the Secretary of the Air Force for Intelligence Space Technology. Kerr made no reference to same in his written testimony.