USS Sampson
"Through Courage and Arms"
(September 15, 2016 - Present)
CDR Tim LaBenz
Commanding Officer

Commander Tim LaBenz, a native of Philadelphia, PA, enlisted in the Navy in 1989 and earned his commission through the Enlisted Commissioning Program upon graduation from Temple University. His first sea tours were aboard USS MONTEREY (CG 61), Norfolk, VA, as the Communications Officer and as First Division Officer, Deck Department in USS JOHN F. KENNEDY (CV 67), in Mayport, FL.

Following his initial sea tours, he reported to the staff of International Surface Warfare Officer’s School in Newport, RI. During this tour he graduated from the U.S. Naval War College earning a Masters of Arts Degree in National Security and Strategic Studies and concurrently earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Norwich University.

CDR LaBenz served his department head tours as Operations Officer in USS ROOSEVELT (DDG 80), Mayport, FL, and as N3/Operations Officer aboard Destroyer Squadron 60 in Naples, Italy.

Ashore, he served as the Second Tour Department Head and Early Command Detailer at Navy Personnel Command, Surface Officer Distribution Division (PERS-41). He subsequently earned his Joint Professional Military Education (Phase II) from the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Virginia and reported to Headquarters, U.S. European Command (EUCOM) in Stuttgart, Germany, serving as the Branch Head for Strategic Resources responsible for EUCOM’s POM/Budget.

In April 2015 he reported aboard as the Executive Officer of USS SAMPSON (DDG 102) and assumed command in September 2016.

CDR LaBenz has been awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medals, Navy-Marine Corps Achievement Medals and various other unit and campaign service medals and ribbons.

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