CDR NEIL "LIL' BUDDY" FLETCHER
Commander Neil B. Fletcher, a native of Chatham, New Jersey, graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2004 as a Secretary of the Navy Distinguished Graduate with a B.S. in Political Science. Before joining the fleet, he earned an M.A. in International Policy from Stanford University while in fellowship with the Preventive Defense Project. After graduate study, he received his Naval Aviator Wings in December 2007 from TRAWING TWO in Kingsville, Texas and then reported to VAW-120, in Norfolk, Virginia for fleet replacement training in the E-2C Hawkeye.
In November 2008, CDR Fletcher reported to the VAW-117 WALLBANGERS in Point Mugu, California. He deployed with Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN aboard USS NIMITZ (CVN 68) in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM and exercises in the Pacific. During his tour COMACCLOGWING named him the 2011 West Coast Hawkeye Pilot of the Year at Sea.
In January 2012, CDR Fletcher reported to the VAW-120 GREYHAWKS in Norfolk, Virginia, as a fleet replacement instructor pilot. In February 2014, he joined COMNAVAIRLANT Staff as Flag Aide to RADM Mike Shoemaker and eventually to RADM John R. Haley.
In July 2015, CDR Fletcher reported to the VAW-124 BEAR ACES as department head serving as the Administrative and Operations Officer. He deployed with Carrier Air Wing EIGHT aboard USS GEORGE H.W. BUSH (CVN 77).
In March 2017, CDR Fletcher reported to United States European Command, Stuttgart, Germany, serving in the Intelligence Directorate (J2) Joint Reconnaissance Center as a strategic intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance planner and as Deputy Branch Head. He is currently the Executive Officer of the VAW-121 BLUETAILS.
LCDR Fletcher has accumulated over 2,400 military flight hours. His personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal (three Strike/Flight awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and various campaign, service, and unit awards.