CDR Leonard C. Mitchell
UNITED STATES NAVY
A native of Mississippi, Commander Lenard Mitchell enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1990. As an enlisted Sailor, he served as a member of the U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard Washington, DC and as an Operations Specialist in USS BAINBRIDGE (CGN 25). He was then selected for the Broadened Opportunity for Officer Selection and Training (BOOST) program and commissioned through the Naval ROTC program. A cum laude graduate of Southern University, Baton Rouge (2000), he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. Commander Mitchell also holds a Master of Public Administration (MPA) from Southern University (2006), and he earned his Master of Arts degree in National Security & Strategic Studies and Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) - Phase I certification from the U.S. Naval War College (2011).
Afloat, Commander Mitchell completed an extended Division Officer tour in USS DEYO (DD 989) as the Tomahawk Strike Officer then as Combat Systems Officer. During this tour, he completed two operational deployments during which his Strike Team conducted over two dozen successful Tomahawk strike engagements. Commander Mitchell served his Department Head tours as the Weapons Officer then as Combat Systems Officer in USS GETTYSBURG (CG 64). During these tours, he also completed two operational deployments in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Baltic Operations (BALTOPS) and Counter-Piracy operations and participated in several multinational exercises. During his three-year tenure, USS GETTYSBURG earned three consecutive Battle “E” awards, including three Black “E” awards for Maritime Warfare Excellence and the 2007/2008 Arizona Memorial Trophy for superior performance in all facets of combat readiness. Commander Mitchell most recently completed his tour as Executive Officer, LCS Crew 109/USS Little Rock LCS 9.
Ashore, Commander Mitchell served as the Navigation Instructor, Junior and Senior Class Advisor, and Lead Recruiter in Southern University NROTC Unit. He later served as Maritime Current Operations Officer and Executive Assistant for the Director of Operations (J3) at U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) Headquarters in Miami, Florida. Commander Mitchell most recently served as the Combat Systems Director, Tactical Mentor and Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) Warfare Tactics Instructor (WTI) at Afloat Training Group, Mayport, Florida.
Commander Mitchell’s personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (five awards) and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (two awards) as well as multiple unit and campaign awards.