|CAPT James W. Landers
Commanding Officer (August 2010 - February 2012)
A native of Caledonia, Mississippi, Captain Landers graduated from the University of Mississippi with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and was commissioned through the NROTC program in 1987. He began his Naval career as a Surface Warfare Officer serving as Gunnery Officer and Navigator in USS Vreeland (FF 1068) homeported in Mayport, FL. In 1989, he was accepted to Naval Flight Officer Training and received his wings in 1991.
Operationally, CAPT Landers commanded Patrol Squadron 47 at MCAS Kaneohe, HI. He led the squadron while deployed to Fifth and Seventh Fleets in support of operations IRAQI and ENDURING FREEDOM. Previous flying tours included his junior officer tour with VP-45 and department head tour with VP-5, both based at NAS Jacksonville, FL. During these tours CAPT Landers deployed to the North Atlantic, Mediterranean and Southwest Asia conducting operations across the spectrum of Maritime Patrol missions. Notably, he led his crews flying Red Sea surveillance during operation DESERT STORM and, the first deployment of the P-3 AIP aircraft conducting combat surveillance over Kosovo during operation ALLIED FORCE.
Ashore, CAPT Landers served with VP-30 as a FRS Instructor where he established the Aircraft Improvement Program (AIP) Fleet Introduction Team. Staff tours include: OPNAV N74 as the Air Anti-Submarine Warfare Programs Officer, and U.S. Pacific Command serving as the Deputy Chief of the Joint Interagency Coordination Group for Counter Terrorism (JIACG/CT). Among notable achievements while at PACOM, he led the development of the Pacific Command’s Regional Maritime Security Program and Southeast Asia Maritime Security (SEAMS) Initiative. Following his command tour, Capt Landers completed the National Resource Strategy Masters Degree program at the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, National Defense University, and then served as Executive Assistant to Commander, Naval Air Forces prior to reporting to USS Makin Island as Executive Officer."
His personal awards include the Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service, Meritorious Service and Air Medal with strike/flight numeral 2.
Evening Colors Onboard USS Makin Island (LHD 8)
SAN DIEGO (Jan. 20, 2011) As the sun sets off the coast of San Diego, members of the color detail march in step down the flight deck in preparation for evening colors onboard USS Makin Island (LHD 8).
Makin Island is Conducting AV8 Operations
PACIFIC OCEAN (Feb. 14, 2011) An Aircraft Handler gives permission to an AV8B Harrier assigned to the Black Sheep of Marine Attack Squadron (VMA) 214 to take off from the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) during training exercises off the coast of Southern California.
M-16 Rifle Qualifications Onboard Makin Island
PACIFIC OCEAN (February 15, 2011) - Gunner's Mate 2nd Class Javier Ibarra gives orders through a megaphone while acting as range safety officer during
M-16 rifle qualifications on board amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8).
Commander U.S. 5th Fleet Visits USS Makin Island
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At Sea - Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet met with Sailors and Marines assigned to amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) during an overnight visit to the ship, Jan. 14-15.
11th MEU Honors Fallen Corpsman with Memorial Service
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At Sea - Marines from the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) and Sailors deployed aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) celebrated the life and service of Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Kyler L. Estrada during a memorial service on board the ship, Feb. 17.
USS Makin Island Change of Command Ceremony
SAN DIEGO - Capt. James W. Landers relieves Capt. Robert G. Kopas during USS Makin Island’s (LHD 8) first change of command ceremony August 27. Landers assumed command of the U.S. Navy’s only hybrid-electric drive amphibious assault ship. Kopas, who assumed command in Sept. 2005, was the first commanding officer of both Pre-Commissioning Unit Makin Island and USS Makin Island. (U. S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Glenn S. Robertson/Released)
USS Makin Island Welcome Ceremony Participating in PIE
SAN YSIDRO, CA – Makin Island is participating in Partners in Education (PIE) program with local area schools. PIE is a non-profit organization consisting of education partners focused on ensuring all students leave school with the academic, technical, and employability skills necessary to be successful in the workplace.
USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Welcomes New Chiefs
SAN DIEGO (Sep. 16, 2010) – “Anchor’s Aweigh” echoed through the hangar bay of USS Makin Island (LHD 8) as 17 chief selectees marched in ranks, ready to receive their gold anchors Sep. 16.
Senior Leadership Summit To Be Held Aboard USS Makin Island (LHD 8)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – The Senior Leadership Summit (SLS) is a first for any San Francisco Fleet Week and is an excellent opportunity for senior Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard leaders to interact with local, state and regional leaders focused on disaster preparedness and response.
MKI Sailors and Marines Train with San Francisco Fire Dept
SAN FRANCISCO – Sailors and Marines aboard USS Makin Island (LHD 8) conducted search and rescue (SAR) training with the San Francisco Fire Department (SFFD) Oct. 8, as part of San Francisco Fleet Week’s (SFFW) focus on disaster preparedness.
USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Team Showcases HADR During Fleet Week
SAN FRANCISCO -- USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Sailors and Marines showcased the ship's disaster relief capabilities during a humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) display Oct. 8-11 at Marina Green as part of San Francisco Fleet Week (SSFW) 2010.
USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Will Save Navy $250 Million
SAN DIEGO (November 8, 2010) – Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Energy) Thomas Hicks speaks with USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Commanding Officer Capt. Jim Landers and Gas Turbine System Technician (Mechanical) 1st Class Nicholas Ayres during a tour.
Filming of Makin Island’s Army-Navy football Spirit Spot
SAN DIEGO (November 15, 2010) – Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Douglas Bedford coaches USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Commanding Officer Capt. Jim Landers during the filming of Makin Island’s Army-Navy football spirit spot.
USS Makin Island Testing Operations
SAN DIEGO (January 13, 2011) – Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Andrew Wiskow, assigned to USS Makin Island (LHD 8), undergoes respirator mask testing in the ship’s hangar bay.
Clintons' Attend Retirement Ceremony aboard USS Makin Island
SAN DIEGO (April 1, 2011) Former U.S. President William Jefferson Clinton speaks to friends and family of Chief Culinary Specialist Oscar Flores during a retirement ceremony aboard the multi-purpose amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8).
Sea Cadets Embark Aboard USS Makin Island
Amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) embarked 42 Sea Cadets from the Naval Sea Cadet Corps (NSCC) July 5-8 to get a first-hand experience of life at sea on a modern Navy warship.
Makin Island's Ceremonial Choir Performs for NNOA Conference
USS Makin Island (LHD 8) Ceremonial Choir showcased its talent by performing three songs to open the final day of the week-long National Naval Officers Association (NNOA) Leadership, Professional Development and Training Conference in San Diego.
Makin Island ARG Completes Integrated Training Phase
San Diego - USS Makin Island (LHD 8), the command ship for PHIBRON 5 and the 11th MEU, operated with the amphibious transport dock ship USS New Orleans (LPD 18) for the first of a three-phase certification process.
USS Makin Island Sailors Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
SAN DIEGO -- A group of Sailors aboard amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) educated their shipmates about ways to reduce the command's environmental impact while at sea Aug. 10-22.
USS Makin Island Named Finalist for Prestigious Ney Award
Amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) has been named a finalist for the 2012 Capt. Edward F. Ney Memorial Awards for Food Service Excellence, according to an official naval message released Sept. 14 by Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet.
USS Makin Island Completes COMPTUEX
The amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) returned to San Diego Sept. 16 after completing a 16-day Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) off the coast of Southern California.
USS Makin Island off the southern coast of California
111010-N-KD852-027 PACIFIC OCEAN (Oct 11, 2011) - The Amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) operates off the southern coast of California. The Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group is underway for a certification exercise in preparation for an upcoming deployment. (U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist John Lill/Released)
USS Makin Island, West Coast Amphibs Ready for Deployments, Blue/Green Exercises
SAN DIEGO - Later this year, the Navy will deploy one of its newest, most efficient and most capable amphibious assault ships, USS Makin Island (LHD 8).
USS Makin Island will make its maiden deployment as the flagship for Amphibious Squadron (CPR) 5 and the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU). Well into next year, CPR 5 and the 11th MEU will work together as they respond as a global force for good, to crisis around the world.
Makin Island ARG departs on maiden deployment
SAN DIEGO - The Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) is scheduled to depart San Diego for deployment Monday, Nov. 14.
USS Makin Island (LHD 8), one of the Navy’s newest, and most efficient amphibious assault ships, will make its maiden deployment as the flag ship for Amphibious Squadron Five and the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU).
USS Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group Deploys
SAN DIEGO - Nearly 4,000 Sailors and Marines from the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) departed San Diego Nov. 14, for a regularly scheduled deployment in support of the Navy's Maritime Strategy.
USS Makin Island Arrives in Hawaii for Scheduled Port Visit
PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii –- More than 2,000 Sailors and Marines serving aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) arrived in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii for a scheduled port visit, marking the first time Makin Island has visited the state of Hawaii.
'Makin Island University' Kicks Off First NCPACE Semester of Deployment
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At Sea - Sailors and Marines aboard USS Makin Island (LHD 8) are finding time to work toward college degrees thanks to Makin Island University, the ship's Navy College Program for Afloat College Education (NCPACE) program, that kicked off its first semester of the current deployment, Nov. 29.
Makin Island Conducts Training Operations at Sea
PHILIPPINE SEA (Dec. 9, 2011) Capt. Cedric Pringle, executive officer of the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8), observes Marines assigned to the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (11th MEU) conducting fast roping training aboard the ship. Makin Island is on its maiden deployment and conducting operations in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist John Lill/Released)
Pearl Harbor Day World War II Ties Run Deep Within Makin Island ARG
PACIFIC OCEAN –- Ceremonies commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Japanese attack on U.S. forces at Pearl Harbor took place aboard each of the three ships that make up the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) as the unit conducted operations in the Western Pacific Ocean, Dec. 7.
USS Makin Island Supports 11th MEU Theater Security Cooperation Missions
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At sea –- The Navy’s newest amphibious assault ship, USS Makin Island (LHD 8), played a major role in supporting theater security cooperation missions in the Asia-Pacific region by serving as the at-sea launching platform for U.S. Marine air and ground forces participating in Exercise Kilat Eagle, Dec. 14.
Makin Island Sailors and Marines Celebrate Christmas in Singapore
SINGAPORE - While there certainly wasn't snow in the forecast for the local climate, Sailors and Marines assigned to the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) still showed signs of holiday spirit by celebrating the Christmas holiday in Singapore, Dec. 25.
Makin Island Sailors and Marines Support 'Women at Sea' Program
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At Sea - Female Sailors and Marines aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) took part in a quarterly "Women at Sea" meeting Dec. 18, to talk about the unique challenges women face serving aboard a U.S. Navy vessel.
Makin Island Sailors and Marines Communicate with Loved Ones via VTC
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At Sea- Several Sailors and Marines deployed aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) were able to speak face-to-face with their families Dec. 29, using video teleconferencing (VTC) technology between the ship and the Fleet and Family Support Center (FFSC) in San Diego.
Makin Island Sailors and Marines Celebrate the New Year at Sea
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At Sea - Sailors and Marines deployed aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) celebrated the arrival of 2012 with a day of Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) festivities, including a "Jingle Bell" 5k fun run on the flight deck, sports in the hangar bay and a special holiday meal, Jan. 1.
Makin Island Sailors Attend Marine Corps Corporals Course
USS MAKIN ISLAND, At Sea - Two Sailors assigned to USS Makin Island (LHD 8) were given the unique opportunity to participate in a Marine Corps leadership development course taught by the embarked 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), Jan. 2-18.
Sailor Attends Church Service on USS Makin Island
ARABIAN SEA - Staff Sgt. Matthew S. Thompson listens to Lt. Leo F. Arnone, a Navy chaplain, as he reads scripture during catholic mass in the chapel. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Ethan Tracey/Released)