Commander Dees is a native of Westlake, Ohio, and a 1997 graduate of the United States Naval Academy with a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a 2005 graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology with a Master’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering.
Upon commissioning, he reported to VT-10 for training as a Naval Flight Officer (NFO) at the completion of which he selected the E-2C Hawkeye pipeline. He received his Wings of Gold at VAW-120 in January 1999.
In July 1999, CDR Dees reported to the Screwtops of VAW-123 in Norfolk, VA. During this tour, CDR Dees deployed onboard USS JOHN F. KENNEDY (CV 67) and USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT (CVN 71) in support of Operations SOUTHERN WATCH and ENDURING FREEDOM and participated in Counter Narcotics Detachments in support of Joint Interagency Task Force-East.
CDR Dees then returned to VAW-120 in July 2002 as a NFO instructor. During his tour with the Greyhawks he served as the Head Schedules Officer, Hawkeye 2000 Training Officer, and the NFO Training Officer. While at VAW-120, he was selected as the 2004 Hawkeye NFO of the Year.
Following his tour at VAW-120, he reported to USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (CVN 69) as the Assistant Navigator. During his tour on-board, he deployed with USS NIMITZ (CVN 68) and USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (CVN 69) in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM and IRAQI FREEDOM.
In 2007, CDR Dees attended the United States Naval War College, Newport, RI., and graduated with distinction with a Masters of Arts in National Security and Strategies Studies.
CDR Dees reported to VAW-117 in Point Mugu, CA in 2008. Serving as Safety, Administrative, and Operations Department Heads, he deployed aboard USS NIMITZ (CVN 68) in July 2009. He was selected as the 2010 COMNAVAIRPAC NFO of the Year and a 2011 Copernicus Award winner.
Following his department head tour, CDR Dees was assigned to Joint Forces Command (JFCOM) J-33 Global Force Management and transitioned to the Joint Staff J-31 Joint Force Coordinator upon JFCOM’s decommissioning.
Commander Dees has accumulated more than 2,900 hours in the E-2C Hawkeye and 900 carrier arrested landings. His personal awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, nine Air Medals, five Navy Commendation Medals, two Naval Achievement Medals and various unit and individual awards.
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