CDR Ryan T. Fulwider
Commander Ryan T. Fulwider, of Neshanic Station, NJ, graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in May 2000 and was designated a Naval Aviator in August 2002. After completing initial Fleet Replacement Squadron (FRS) training at VFA-122 in July 2003, he was ordered to the VFA-2 BOUNTY HUNTERS. While at VFA-2 he completed two Western Pacific deployments aboard the USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN (CVN 72), including Operation UNIFIED ASSISTANCE providing tsunami disaster relief for Indonesia, and numerous multinational joint exercises.
In November 2006, CDR Fulwider reported to the GLADIATORS of VFA-106 as an Instructor Pilot and Landing Signal Officer (LSO). While assigned, he served as the Super Hornet Carrier Qualification (CQ) Phase Head and as a member of the Super Hornet Tactical Demonstration Team. CDR Fulwider was next assigned to CARRIER AIR WING ONE (CVW-1) in April 2009. As an Air Wing LSO and Safety Officer he completed a combat deployment aboard the USS ENTERPRISE (CVN 65) in support of Counter Piracy Operations in the Gulf of Oman and Operation ENDURING FREEDOM (OEF).
In August of 2011, CDR Fulwider reported to the BLACK KNIGHTS of VFA-154. As a Department Head he served as Safety, Administrative, and Operations Officer and completed a nine-month combat deployment on the USS NIMITZ (CVN 68) in support of OEF. In March of 2015, he graduated from the U.S. Naval War College of Naval Command and Staff with a Master of Arts Degree in National Security and Strategic Studies and a Qualification Designator in Irregular Warfare.
CDR Fulwider has accrued over 2600 total flight hours, including 158 combat hours, and more than 670 carrier arrested landings. He is a two-time Commander, Naval Air Forces, U.S. Atlantic Fleet LSO of the Year and his military awards and decorations include the Strike Flight Air Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (2), Navy Achievement Medal (4), and numerous other campaign and unit awards.