USS SOMERSET
"Courage Through Adversity"
CAPT Dave Kurtz
Commanding Officer

CAPT Dave Kurtz, a native of Coatesville, Pennsylvania graduated from the United States Naval Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics in 1996. Following flight training and designation as a Naval Flight Officer, he reported to VAQ-129 at NAS Whidbey Island, Washington for initial training in the EA-6B Prowler. In 2011, CAPT Kurtz transitioned to the EA-18G Growler.

CAPT Kurtz’s sea duty assignments include Executive Officer at USS NIMITZ (CVN 68); Commanding Officer and Executive Officer of VAQ-132, the “Scorpions”, leading the command on the first expeditionary Growler deployment in the U.S. Pacific Command Area of Responsibility; Maintenance and Tactics Officer at VAQ-136, homeported at NAF Atsugi, Japan; Strike Operations Officer at Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN; and Training and Quality Assurance Officer at VAQ-138.Ashore, CAPT Kurtz earned designation as a Prowler Tactics Instructor and served as Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses (SEAD) Weapons Subject Matter Expert and Air Wing Instructor at the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center (NSAWC) in Fallon, NV; SEAD Planner for Operation IRAQI FREEDOM where he planned and scheduled over 800 Prowler missions in support of combat operations; Legislative Fellow in the office of Rep. Robert A. Brady (PA-1); and Deputy Division Chief and Electronic Warfare Branch Chief in the Cyber and Electronic Warfare Operations Division, J-39, in the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

CAPT Kurtz has earned a Master’s Degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College, a Certificate of Advanced Legislative Studies from Georgetown University’s Government Affairs Institute, and has completed training at the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command and Nuclear Power Training Unit in Charleston, South Carolina. CAPT Kurtz has earned the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (two awards), and Strike Flight Air Medal (with bronze numeral 3) for having flown over 60 combat missions in the EA-6B in support of Operations SOUTHERN WATCH, ENDURING FREEDOM, and IRAQI FREEDOM.He has accumulated over 2,500 flight hours and over 650 arrested landings.
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