Michael C. Bratley
Commander, U.S. Navy
Commander Mike "Dan-O" Bratley is a native of Kennewick, Washington. His career in the U.S. Navy began upon his enlistment on September 3rd 1985. Following his father's lead (a retired Submarine qualified Master Chief) he volunteered for Submarine duty and qualified for training in the advanced electronic field.
Following recruit and equipment specific training, ET3 Bratley reported aboard his first operational command, the USS Florida (SSBN-728) stationed at the Bangor Subase in Silverdale, Washington. After serving in the Florida for 3 years and 6 deployments he transferred to Trident Training Facility as an instructor in navigation team training simulations and inertial navigation theory and analysis. Upon completion of his instructor tour, ET2/SS Bratley received orders to the Navy's Deep Submergence Unit stationed onboard Naval Base Coronado in San Diego, California. Assigned as an Electronic Technician and Navigator to DSV-4 Seacliff and DSV-2 Avalon, newly promoted ET1/SS Bratley completed multiple deployments culminating his tour with a dive to 12,000ft and selection to the Navy's Enlisted Commissioning Program.
Officer Candidate Bratley attended the University of Idaho graduating with dual Bachelor of Science degrees in Naval Science (December 1995) and Psychology (June 1996). He was selected for flight training and commissioned to the rank of Ensign on the 22nd of December 1995. His completion of the advanced strike flight training syllabus in VT-3, VT-19 and VT-23 culminated with his carrier qualification in the T-45C Goshawk aboard the USS George Washington (CVN-73) and designation as a Naval Aviator in May 1999. After accepting short notice orders and a training pipeline change in July 1999, Lieutenant Bratley completed the 16 week turbo-prop training syllabus at VT-31 in less than 30 days to meet emergent service needs. He reported to VAW-120 for E2-C Fleet Readiness Training at the Norfolk Naval Air Station in August of the same year.
Upon completing the E-2C Hawkeye pilot syllabus at VAW-120, Lieutenant Bratley reported to the Seahawks of VAW-126 in June of 2000, duties during this tour included NATOPS Officer and Landing Signals Officer. While attached to the Seahawks he deployed twice aboard the USS Harry S. Truman supporting Operations Southern Watch (2000) and Iraqi Freedom (2003). In July 2003 he again reported to VAW-120, this time as an instructor pilot training future E-2C replacement pilots. While assigned to VAW-120 Lieutenant Bratley served as E-2C Pilot Training Officer, Assistant Maintenance Officer and was hand-selected for transition to the C-2A community.
In May 2006 recently promoted Lieutenant Commander Bratley received orders to the VRC-40 Rawhides for his Department Head tour as Administrative Officer and Officer-in-Charge of Detachment Four. He deployed in June 2007 with the USS Enterprise (CVN 65) Battle Group participating in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. After returning from deployment he assumed the duties of Maintenance Officer until detaching from the Rawhides. During this tour LCDR Bratley received his Conning Alongside and CDO Underway qualifications aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) and completed JPME Phase I training.
LCDR Bratley reported to Joint Forces Command, Joint Center for Operational Analysis for his Joint tour in December 2008 serving as the JCOA Engagement Division Executive Officer and as Lesson Learned Analyst - during his tour JFCOM was disestablished and reorganized under Joint Staff J-7. While attached to JFCOM/JS J7 he attended Joint Forces Staff College completing his JPME-II training requirement, was promoted to CDR, selected for Aviation Command and completed an MS in Management as well as an M.B.A. from the University of Maryland.
His military decorations include the Air Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (4 awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (2 awards), and numerous campaign and unit awards. He has 2,631 flight hours in 6 different aircraft and over 400 arrested landings on 8 aircraft carriers.