Commander Jay P. Russo

Commanding Officer, Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 51

28 October 2020 A native of Manchester, Connecticut, Commander Jay Russo graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2001 and was designated a Naval Aviator in February 2003 flying the SH-60B Seahawk.

Commander Russo’s operational assignments include tours with Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light FOUR TWO (HSL-42), USS IWO JIMA, and Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron FOUR EIGHT (HSM-48).  While at HSL-42 he deployed with the KEARSARGE Expeditionary Strike Group on USS NORMANDY in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.  He later deployed as Detachment Maintenance Officer with USS IWO JIMA Expeditionary Strike Group on USS PHILIPPINE SEA again supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.  He was selected as the HSL-42 2004 Administrative Officer of the Year and 2006 Pilot of the Year.
As a crewmember of the USS IWO JIMA, he deployed as Flight Deck Officer and Assistant Air Officer in support of Operation Continuing Promise to the FOURTH Fleet Area of Responsibility and earned his Officer of the Deck Underway qualification.  With HSM-48 he deployed in USS NICHOLAS on her final deployment in support of Operation Active Endeavour and NATO Anti-Piracy Operations.  Upon returning from deployment, Commander Russo served as Squadron Maintenance Officer and was selected as the 2013 Naval Air Forces Navy and Marine Corps Association Leadership Award winner and the 2014 HSM-48 Officer of the Year.

Ashore, Commander Russo served at HSL-40 as a Fleet Replacement Squadron Instructor Pilot in the SH-60B.  He was recognized as the 2008 HSL-40 Pilot of the Year and was awarded the 2008 HSM Wing Atlantic Rear Admiral Stroh Award for excellence in leadership.  In 2015 he reported to the Pentagon where he served on the Joint Staff, J-3 as a Strategic Surveillance Officer, Emergency Actions Officer, Assistant Deputy Director for Operations, and Presidential Strike Advisor in the National Military Command Center.  In February 2017 he reported to HSM-40 for transition to the MH-60R and to serve as the Executive Officer.

Commander Russo holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the United States Naval Academy, an Masters of Business Administration from the University of Florida, and is a graduate of the Air Command and Staff College (non-resident program).  He has been awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals in addition to other unit and personal awards.
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