Captain Brad Cooper is the son of a career Army officer and is married to his High School sweetheart, a talented Speech-Language Pathologist.
Captain Cooper’s career has been highlighted by global service in every Combatant Command theater of operation including a deployment on the ground in Afghanistan.
Afloat, he most recently had the great life privilege of serving as Commanding Officer, USS RUSSELL (DDG 59). Other afloat tours include: Executive Officer, USS VICKSBURG (CG 69); Operations Officer in USS ANZIO (CG 68) and USS FITZGERALD (DDG 62); Flag Aide to Commander, EISENHOWER Carrier Strike Group; and CIC Officer/Electrical Officer in USS THOMAS S. GATES (CG 51).
During these tours, he participated in 13 named operations including Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM; 3 deployments conducting Counter-Narcotic Operations off the coast of South America; support of humanitarian relief operations into Sarajevo in 1992; Haitian migrant operations in 1993; Kosovo contingency operations in 1998; 3 deployments to the Persian Gulf conducting Interdiction Operations against the regime of Saddam Hussein; a deployment to the North Arabian Sea following the attacks of 9/11; multiple operations targeting Taliban and Al Qaida operatives in Afghanistan in 2006 and a surge deployment to the Western Pacific in 2007.
Ashore, he presently serves as the Senior Military Assistant to the Under Secretary of Defense (Personnel/Readiness). Other tours include: Special Assistant to the Commander, U.S. Africa Command in Stuttgart, Germany; U.S. Advisor to the Afghan Interior Minister and Division Chief for Strategic Reform of the Afghan Police/Border Guards while assigned to Combined Security Transition Command (CSTC-A) in Kabul; Flag Aide to the Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; and, 3 tours in the Navy Personnel Command, including service as Deputy Director and Assistant Captain Detailer, Surface Officer Assignment Division. Cooper has also served in a temporary duty capacity on Joint/Combined Task Force staffs in 4 theaters of operation.
He is a 1989 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and earned an MS in Strategic Intelligence from the National Defense Intelligence College in Washington, DC. He is also a graduate of the Army Command and General Staff College and was a Navy Fellow at the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies.
Cooper has been recognized with 16 personal awards, including the Bronze Star Medal, and is the recipient of the 2003 Admiral Elmo Zumwalt Award for Visionary Leadership from the Surface Navy Association. Crews with which he has served have proudly earned 8 ‘Battle E’ awards, including 3 straight during his command tour in RUSSELL, as well as 9 various unit commendations.
Captain Cooper is the prospective Commanding Officer of USS AMERICA (LHA 6), the lead ship of the Navy's newest ship class -– the 45,000 ton AMERICA-class.