|LT Rafael Arias
Lieutenant Rafael Arias was born in Cotui, Dominican Republic and grew up in the Bronx, NY. He holds a Bachelors and Master’s degree in Criminal Justice from Saint Leo University.
Lieutenant Arias enlisted in the United States Navy in 2000. After completing recruit training command and A-school he was assigned to the USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT (CVN 71) as an Aviation Support Equipment Technician. While assigned to the THEODORE ROOSEVELT, he deployed twice; in 2001 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and in 2003 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. His following tour was Fleet Readiness Center Norfolk where he was selected for Officer Candidate School.
Following Commissioning in 2008, Lieutenant Arias was assigned as the Strike Officer and Force Protection Officer onboard USS BULKELEY (DDG 84). While on BULKELEY, Lieutenant Arias earned his Surface Warfare Officer qualification. He deployed in Support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Counter-Piracy operations in the Gulf of Oman.
Lieutenant Arias next assignment, 2011-2013, was the USS PHILIPPINE SEA (CG 58), where he served as the Auxiliaries Officer. While on PHILIPPINE SEA, LT Arias completed another deployment in support of Counter-Piracy Operations in the Gulf of Oman and Partnership Operations in the Black Sea.
Ashore, LT Arias served as the Senior and Battalion Advisor at Villanova NROTC.
Lieutenant Arias decorations include the Navy Commendation Medal (2), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (4), and various unit and campaign awards.