CAPT Sakaguchi graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1986 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science. As a newly commissioned Ensign, he attended Surface Warfare Officers School in Newport, RI before reporting to his first ship, USS CARON (DD 970) in Norfolk, VA in 1987. On CARON, CAPT Sakaguchi was assigned duties as Gunnery Officer, Damage Control Assistant, and Main Propulsion Assistant; he deployed to the Mediterranean Sea and Black Sea with the CORAL SEA Battle Group and also completed an extended modernization shipyard period in New Orleans.
In 1990, following his assignment on CARON, CAPT Sakaguchi reported to COMDESRON TEN in Norfolk as the Assistant Material Officer responsible for the material and training readiness for 18 cruisers and destroyers. In 1992, he then reported to Department Head training in Newport, RI and Dahlgren, VA before being assigned in 1993 to Precommissioning Unit STOUT in Pascagoula, MS. As a plank owner of USS STOUT (DDG 55), CAPT Sakaguchi served as the Chief Engineer completing crew shakedown, sea trials, and ending with a six month deployment to the Sixth Fleet with GEORGE WASHINGTON Carrier Strike Group supporting Operation Joint Endeavor.
CAPT Sakaguchi next attended the U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College in Quantico, VA in 1996 where he completed Joint Professional Military Education and earned a Masters Degree in Military Studies. As a joint duty trained officer, his next assignment was to Headquarters, U.S. Southern Command in Quarry Heights, Panama and Miami, FL where he served as a naval operations officer and counter-narcotics program and plans officer responsible for organizing training and partnerships with South American and Caribbean militaries in stopping the production and transfer of illicit drugs to the United States.
In 2000, CAPT Sakaguchi attended Surface Warfare executive officer training in Newport followed by his assignment to USS VICKSBURG (CG 69) in Mayport, FL as Executive Officer. During his tour on VICKSBURG, he participated in the operational evaluation of the Cooperative Engagement Capability system and participated in deployment integrated training with the JOHN F. KENNEDY Carrier Strike Group.
CAPT Sakaguchi’s next assignment in 2002 was on the OPNAV staff in the Pentagon as the Surface Warfare Division future budget officer. In 2003, CAPT Sakaguchi returned to sea duty as the Commanding Officer of the High Speed Vessel SWIFT (HSV-2), GOLD CREW. During his command tour, he made multiple deployments to the Middle East, Western Africa, the Mediterranean Sea, and the Western Pacific. He participated in exercise WATC 2003, RIMPAC 2004, provided humanitarian relief support during Operation Unified Assistance in response to the tsunami disaster in Indonesia and Thailand. Before transferring from SWIFT, he demonstrated the utility of the HSV as an adaptable high speed connector by providing logistic support to relief operations in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.
In the fall of 2005, CAPT Sakaguchi reported to USS IWO JIMA (LHD 7) as Executive Officer. While assigned to IWO JIMA, he completed the full cycle of the Fleet Response Training Plan and deployed as the flagship for COMPHIBRON Four and the IWO JIMA Expeditionary Strike Group where he supported Operation Enduring Freedom and participated in the 2006 Non-Combatant Evacuation of over 15,000 Americans from Lebanon. After completing two years onboard IWO JIMA, he returned to Washington, D.C. where he served as the Chief of Staff for Commander, Naval Surface Warfare Center at the Washington Navy Yard.
After completing 16 months at the Navy Yard, he returned to sea duty as the Deputy and Commander of Amphibious Squadron Three in San Diego. While assigned to PHIBRON Three, he deployed twice to the Western Pacific and Middle East. While deployed with the PELELIU Amphibious Ready Group, he participated in humanitarian relief operations in Pakistan, coordinated counter piracy operations with embarked Marines conducting an opposed boarding of the pirated merchant vessel Magellan Star, and coordinated the rescue of 62 refugees at sea.
CAPT Sakaguchi has earned various campaign, expeditionary and unit awards; his personal awards include the Legion of Merit, the Joint Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Commendation Medal (four awards), the Navy Commendation Medal (three awards), and the Navy Achievement Medal (two awards).