USS OSCAR AUSTIN


Commander Russel B. Sanchez 
Commanding Officer

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Commander Russel B Sanchez is a native of Clarksville Texas and enlisted in the Navy in 1987. Upon completion of Fire Controlman “A” School he served aboard the USS CONNOLE (FF 1056), USS AYLWIN (FF 1081), USS GONZALEZ (DDG 66), and was an instructor at the Surface Warfare Officers School.

In February 1997, he was commissioned at Officer Candidate School Pensacola FL, under the Seaman to Admiral program. Following initial training, Commander Sanchez reported to the USS RAMAGE (DDG 61) for duty as the Strike Officer. His next assignment was as the Engineering officer aboard the USS DEVASTATOR (MCM 6).

Following his Division Officer tours, Commander Sanchez attended Norfolk State University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science. After Department Head training, he successfully completed tours as the Weapons Officer and Combat Systems officer onboard USS MONTEREY (CG-61).

Commander Sanchez advanced his education at the Naval War College earning a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies as well as completing the Naval Operational Planner Course (NOPC). Ashore, Commander Sanchez served at COMSECONDFLT as the lead planner for the Future Plans and Contingency Planning directorates. CDR Sanchez reported as Executive Officer of USS Oscar Austin in October 2012 and assumed command in August 2014.

Commander Sanchez’s personal decorations include, Navy Commendation Medal (Six awards) Navy Achievement Medal (four awards) in addition to various unit citations and campaign awards.