Capt Cathal S. O'Connor
Chief Of Staff (April 2010 - April 2011)

Captain Cathal S. O’Connor is a 1988 graduate from the University of Virginia, and a 1996 graduate from the Naval War College and Salve Regina University.

Operational tours include command of USS Rushmore (LSD 47), Plans Officer, Exercise Officer and Tomahawk Strike Missile Officer for Commander Kitty Hawk Strike Group, Executive Officer in USS Tortuga (LSD 46), Operations Officer for Amphibious Squadron FIVE, Surface Operations Officer in USS Essex (LHD 2), Operations Intelligence Officer in USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63), Combat Information Center Officer in USS PHARRIS (FF 1094), Electronic Warfare Officer in USS Truett (FF 1095), and Electrical Officer aboard USS Farragut (DDG 37).

Ashore, he served as Special Projects Officer at Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center, as Division Officer, Department Head, and Major Command Course Instructor at Surface Warfare Officer School Command, as Senior Air Defense Officer and Tomahawk Strike Missile Officer for Commander, Joint Task Force Southwest Asia, as Special Assistant (Speech Writer) to the Chief of Naval Operations, as Deputy Executive Assistant to the Director of Expeditionary Warfare (N-75), as Maritime Analyst and Global Strike Assessment Lead on the Joint Staff (J-8), as Project Officer on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations in Deep Blue, and as Surface Warfare Division Lead and Navy Liaison Officer to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy during the 2010 Navy Quadrennial Defense Review.

During his tour as Commanding Officer, USS Rushmore (LSD 47) earned the Battle Efficiency Award, the SECNAV and CNO Safety Award, the SECNAV Energy Conservation Award (Blue), the Gold Anchor Retention Award, the Ship’s Store Excellence and Best in Class Award, the Surface Warfare Officer and Enlisted Excellence Awards and the Unit Tactics Award (2006 & 2007). Individually, Rushmore Sailors received the CAPT Joy Bright Hancock Leadership Award (2006 & 2007), Latina Style Military Service Award, Association of Old Crows PSYOPS Excellence Award, Naval Surface Forces Ship Handler of the Year Award, and Military Fire Officer of the Year Award (Runner Up).

His awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (3), Navy Commendation Medal (8), the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Navy Achievement Medal, the Surface Navy Association Literary Award and various campaign and unit decorations.


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