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Captain Michael G. "Skids" Stokes
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing, U.S. Pacific Fleet
CAPT Michael Stokes was born in Canton, Ohio and grew up in Sarasota, Florida. He graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. In April 1999, he was commissioned from Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, Florida. In August 2001, CAPT Stokes received his wings of gold in Kingsville, Texas and was given orders to VFA-125 in Lemoore, California for initial F/A-18C training. Following completion of VFA-125 in June 2002, CAPT Stokes transferred to VFA-94 where he was the Schedules Officer, Aircraft Division Officer, and Air-to-Ground Weapons Officer. While in VFA-94, he deployed on the USS NIMITZ (CVN-68) in March 2003, flying missions in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Following his initial tour with VFA-94, CAPT Stokes was selected for United States Navy Test Pilot School and graduated with Class 128 in December 2005. Upon completion, he was assigned to VX-31 in China Lake, CA from January 2006 to June 2009 where he was the project officer for AESA, Software Configuration Sets (SCS) 20X and 21X, and the Ground Proximity Warning System/Terrain Avoidance System (GPWS/TAWS). During his tenure at VX-31, he completed an Individual Augmentation (IA) at Camp Victory, Baghdad, Iraq as the Counter Improvised Explosive Device (IED) Operations Officer in the J33 from March 2008 to April 2009.
CAPT Stokes headed to US Navy War College in Newport, Rhode Island in July 2009 where he received his Masters of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies in June 2010. Additionally, he completed a Master’s of Science in Aviation Systems from the University of Tennessee.
After graduating War College, he transferred to VFA-146 Blue Diamonds in Lemoore, CA for his Department Head assignment from July 2010 through February 2013. His billets included Maintenance, Operations, Safety, and Quality Assurance Officer. He flew combat missions in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom onboard the USS RONALD REAGAN (CVN-76).
In March 2013, he became the Commander, Naval Air Force, Pacific (CNAP) F/A-18 and JSF Readiness Officer in San Diego, CA and was selected for operational F/A-18 command. CAPT Stokes reported to VFA-137 as Executive Officer in April 2014 and was the Commanding Officer from May 2015 to August 2016. After command, he returned to CNAP as the N8 Future Manpower Requirements Officer, Training Systems Requirements Officer, and also filled in as the N8 Deputy Force Requirements Assistant Chief of Staff (ACOS). In December 2019, he transferred from San Diego to the JSF Wing at NAS Lemoore, CA as the JSF Wing Chief of Staff and was the Combined Air and Space Operations Center (CAOC) Battle Director from March to September 2021. He assumed the duties of Deputy Commodore in December 2021.
CAPT Stokes has accumulated over 2300 flight hours in 27 aircraft makes and models and 45 combat missions. His awards include three Meritorious Service Medals, Strike Flight Air Medal, three Navy Commendation Medals, Navy Achievement Medal, and other unit service and campaign awards.
Last Updated: 28 September 2023