At sea, Captain Leland has served with Anti-Submarine Squadron Seven, Dusty Dogs, embarked with Carrier Air Wing Three, completing deployments aboard USS Enterprise (CVN 65) in support of Operation Desert Fox and aboard USS Harry Truman (CVN 75); Carrier Air Wing Fourteen (CVW 14) deploying aboard USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) and USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. During his tour with CVW-14, he was forward deployed to serve as an air liaison officer for Naval Special Warfare Task Unit in Al Anbar Province, Iraq during the summer of 2005.
In 2006, Captain Leland reported for his operational department head tour with Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Four, the Black Knights, flying combat missions forward deployed from the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) to the British Joint Helicopter Force base in Basrah, Iraq; he completed two additional deployments aboard the Reagan. Prior to his department head tour he was assigned to augment the Combined Joint Special Operations Air Component with Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron Five, the Firehawks, flying combat missions and serving as the operations officer for the Navy HH-60H Component.
His shore assignments include; Air Test and Evaluation Squadron One (VX-1) serving as the HS tactics officer, while assigned to VX-1, he was selected to attend Seahawk Weapons and Tactics Instructor school in Fallon, Nev., and was an operational test pilot for the MH-60R and MH-60S operational evaluation programs; Chief of Naval Air Forces staff, as the liaison officer to Naval Special Warfare Command; and the Joint Staff, J-8, Joint Capabilities division.
During his career, Captain Leland has flown over 3,300 flight hours and held command of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 21, the Blackjacks, and Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 25, the Island Knights.
He assumed the duties as Executive Officer of the USS Bataan (LHD-5) in August 2017.
Captain Leland holds a Master’s degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College. In 2014, he was selected by his peers for the Navy and Marine Corps Association Leadership award. In 2015, he was selected to represent the Joint Staff for the MIT Seminar XXI Fellowship program, and in 2017, he was nominated by the Navy for the Secretary of Defense Executive Fellowship program.
His personal awards include the Joint Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Meritorious Service Medal (2 awards), Strike/Fighter Air Medal (4 awards), Air Medal with Combat Distinguishing Device, Navy Commendation Medal (3 awards), Navy Achievement Medal (3 awards), Australian Silver Commendation from the Australian Defense Force and various unit and service related awards.