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Captain James Midkiff
Commanding Officer

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Captain James Midkiff is a native of Mount Airy, North Carolina.  He enlisted in the Navy in 1983, and eventually received his Commission from the United States Naval Academy in May 1990.  He is also a graduate of the Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA, where he obtained his Master's degree in National Security Affairs-Middle East/North Africa, the Joint Forces Staff College, where he completed all requirements as a Joint Service Officer and the Navy Senior Leadership Seminar.

Midkiff’s sea assignments include Electrician, USS SAIPAN (LHA 2); Gunnery Officer and Boilers Officer in USS JOSEPHUS DANIELS (CG 27); two Engineer Officer tours, first in USS ARTHUR W. RADFORD (DD 968) and then in USS SAN JACINTO (CG 56);  Assistant Surface Operations Officer/Antiterrorism Officer on the Commander, Carrier Group Two staff embarked in USS HARRY S TRUMAN (CVN 75); and Operations and Plans Officer on the Commander, Carrier Strike Group Twelve staff embarked in USS ENTERPRISE (CVN 65).  He commanded MHC Crew Prestige which was embarked in USS HERON (MHC 52), USS RAVEN (MHC 61), and USS FALCON (MHC 59) and then USS OSCAR AUSTIN (DDG 79).  He assumed command of USS IWO JIMA (LHD 7) in June 2016.
Shore assignments include the Joint Staff in Washington DC, as an anti-terrorism action officer in the Operations Directorate; as a Surface Warfare Officer post department head detailer at the Naval Personnel Command in Millington, TN; and as the Surface Navy Requirements and Capabilities Officer on the staff of Commander, United States Fleet Forces Command in Norfolk, VA.
Captain Midkiff has been awarded the Legion of Merit (two awards), Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), the Navy-Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards) and the Navy Achievement Medal (two awards).