|CAPT Don Gabrielson
Commanding Officer (April 2011 - February 2013)
Captain Don Gabrielson is a Northern Minnesota native and a 1989 graduate of the US Naval Academy. He has deployed globally, to the Middle East, Pacific, Atlantic and Baltic Sea regions conducting combined and multi-national operations, exercises, special projects, and operational testing. Gabrielson commanded the first Littoral Combat Ship, USS FREEDOM (LCS 1), Blue Crew, from design and construction in Marinette, Wisconsin, through commissioning, sailing all five Great Lakes and the St Lawrence Seaway. Previous sea tours were served onboard USS ANZIO (CG 68), homeported in Norfolk, Virginia, as Executive Officer, onboard USS RUSSELL (DDG 59), homeported in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as Weapons, Combat System, and Operations Officer, onboard USS MOBILE BAY (CG 53), forward deployed to Yokosuka, Japan, as Combat Information Center and Assistant Operations Officer, and USS RODNEY M. DAVIS (FFG 60), also forward deployed, as Communications Officer and First Lieutenant.
Ashore, Captain Gabrielson served several tours in the Pentagon, as Aide de Camp to two Vice Chiefs of Naval Operations, as a Surface and Anti-Submarine Warfare program analyst in the Chief of Naval Operations OPNAV N81 Assessments Division, and in the Secretary of the Navy’s Office of Legislative Affairs as liaison to the U.S. Congress for surface ship and strategic sealift programs. Most recently, he served on the Joint Staff as Principal Deputy Special Assistant for Legislative Affairs to the Chairman, as liaison to the U.S. Congress for current operations and policies. He also served on the Fort Hood Review Panel as a researcher and deputy chief editor of its final report, and on the Defense Efficiencies Task Force as an analyst, both attached to the immediate office of the Secretary of Defense.
Captain Gabrielson is married to Navenka Gabrielson, formerly of Rochdale, Lancashire, England. He holds degrees in English (BS, USNA), Operations Research (MS, Naval Postgraduate School), and National Security Strategy (MS, National War College). He is an alumnus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Seminar XXI program in national security. Captain Gabrielson’s awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (4 awards), the Joint Service Commendation Medal (2 awards), Navy Commendation and Achievement medals and various unit and service citations.