Commander Nakia M. Cooper
CDR Nakia Cooper grew up in Manassas, Virginia. He entered the Navy through the Baccalaureate Degree Completion program while receiving his Bachelors of Science in Physical Education/Teacher Education at West Virginia University. He was commissioned through Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, Florida in 1998.
Following commissioning, he completed Surface Warfare Officer training in preparation for his first assignment onboard USS CARTER HALL (LSD 50). During this tour he served as the Gunnery/Force Protection Officer, completing a UNITAS deployment and a West African Training Cruise (WATC). Upon completion of his first assignment he was selected to remain onboard USS CARTER HALL (LSD 50) for a single longer tour and became the ships Navigator.
Upon completion of his initial sea assignments he was assigned to the Pentagon on the OPNAV Staff. During this tour he served as a Foreign Liaison Officer in the N2L organization.
After completing Department Head School in Newport, Rhode Island, he was assigned to USS ASHLAND (LSD 48) as the Operations Officer. During this tour he completed an Arabian Gulf deployment in support of Operations ENDURING and IRAQI FREEDOM. CDR Cooper then was assigned as Commanding Officer of PC Crew JULIET, and commanded USS SQUALL (PC 7) and USS FIREBOLT (PC 10). Upon completion of his command tour he attended the Naval War College followed by another tour at the Pentagon in OPNAV N95 as a requirements/action officer. Following his OPNAV tour he assigned as the Flag Secretary/Administration Officer for Commander, Expeditionary Strike Group TWO. His most recent assignment was as an Operational Analyst with the Joint and Coalition Operational Analysis division, Joint Staff, J7.
CDR Cooper’s personal awards include the Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal (two awards), the Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards), the Meritorious Service Medal and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.