Commander Nate Barton

Executive Officer, Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 136

26 October 2020 Commander Nate “Vili” Barton is a native of Hummelstown, Pennsylvania, and graduated from Lower Dauphin High School in 1998.  He attended the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York, where he lettered in Basketball and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Logistics.  In 2002, he was commissioned as an Ensign in the U.S. Navy.

In August 2006, following initial training in the EA-6B Prowler, CDR Barton reported to the “Black Ravens” of VAQ-135 where he served as the senior Landing Signals Officer (LSO).  He deployed in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM and Operation ENDURING FREEDOM aboard the USS CARL NIMITZ (CVN 68).  Additionally, he participated in several multi-national exercises with Indian, Japanese, Singaporean and South Korean naval and air forces.  CDR Barton was awarded the Debartolomeo Leadership Award and the 2009 Landing Signals Officer of the Year Award for the Electronic Attack community while assigned to VAQ-135.

In July 2009, CDR Barton reported to VFA-106, the “Gladiators,” at NAS Oceana, Virginia for initial training in the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet.  He returned to VAQ-129 in 2010 as an EA-18G instructor pilot.  As a flight instructor and carrier qualification phase head, he was recognized as the 2012 EA-18G Instructor Pilot of the Year.

In September 2012, CDR Barton joined the Blue Angels.  He served has Left Wing Pilot in 2013 and 2014, and Slot Pilot in 2015. While on the team, he flew thousands of flight demonstrations around the continental United States and Hawaii.

In January 2016, CDR Barton returned to NAS Whidbey Island to serve as a Department Head and Senior Pilot of VAQ-137.  As a “Rook”, he served as the Maintenance Officer and Operations Officer while also instructing EA-18G pilots in air-to-air and air-to-ground employment.  Following his Department Head tour, in July 2017, CDR Barton reported to U.S. Northern Command at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Commander Barton has accumulated over 3,000 flight hours and over 350 carrier-arrested landings in seven different naval aircraft during his 18 years of naval service.  His decorations include two Meritorious Service Medals, two Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medals, two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, and various personal and unit awards.
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