COMMANDER B. Van Buskirk
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron TWELVE (HSC-12)
CDR Van Buskirk was raised in Menlo Park, CA and graduated from Mountain View High School in Tucson, AZ in 1994. He attended the University of Arizona and received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance in May, 1998 and received his commission from Officer Candidate School in January, 1999.
CDR Van Buskirk attended naval flight training in Corpus Christi, Texas and Pensacola, Florida, and graduated with distinction receiving his Wings of Gold in September 2000. After advanced training at HS-10 in San Diego, he was qualified as an SH-60F/HH-60H Seahawk pilot.
In October 2001, he reported to the “Dusty Dogs” of HS-7 in Jacksonville, Florida. During this tour he deployed twice onboard the USS HARRY S TRUMAN (CVN 75) in support of OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM and follow on surge operations, where his squadron earned the coveted “Battle E”. He held billets of Assistant Training Officer, AV/ARM Division Officer, and Quality Assurance Officer.
In October 2004 he reported once again to HS-10 for duties as an FRS Instructor Pilot. During this tour he served as Assistant Admin Officer, Assistant Training Officer, and Curriculum Officer. In September 2007 he was ordered to HS-10 Expeditionary Sea Combat Unit ONE for duty as the Operations Officer. He was deployed onboard the afloat forward staging base USNS GYGST FRED W STOCKHAM, where he flew multiple combat missions in support of JOINT SPECIAL OPERATIONS TASK FORCE - PHILIPPINES and JOINT TASK FORCE 515.
In May of 2008 he reported as Aide to Commander, Navy Region Hawaii / Commander, Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific (MIDPAC) at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. While in Hawaii he qualified Officer of the Deck (underway) and CDO (underway) onboard USS CHOSIN (CG-65).
CDR Van Buskirk then reported to the “Chargers” of HS-14 in Atsugi, Japan. During this tour he deployed three times onboard USS COWPENS (CG-63) and twice onboard USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN-73) in the C7F AOR. While in Japan he earned his second “Battle E” and participated in OPERATION TOMODACHI disaster relief operations. While assigned to HS-14 he served as Administrative Officer, Detachment Officer-in-Charge, and Operations Officer.
Following his department head tour, CDR Van Buskirk served as Assistant Deputy Director for Operations, Presidential Strike Advisor, and Senior Emergency Actions Officer on the Joint Staff J-3 Directorate at the National Military Command Center, Washington D.C. He selected for squadron command in March 2013 and reported HSC-12 as Executive Officer in December 2015.
He is a graduate of Cornell University’s Executive Leadership program and holds an Executive Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Naval Postgraduate School at Monterey, California.
CDR Van Buskirk has over 2,500 flight hours with over 2,000 in the H-60F/H.