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Commander James J. Light

A native of Glenville, New York, Commander Light graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2004 and Naval Postgraduate School in 2005, earning a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Economics and a Master of Science with Honors in Command and Control.  CDR Light reported to NAS Pensacola, FL for flight training in September 2005. He earned his Naval Aviator Wings in January 2008. In February 2008, CDR Light reported to the VAW 120 “Greyhawks” for initial fleet training as a C-2A Pilot. 
CDR Light began his operational flying in March 2009 with the “Providers” of VRC 30.  While a “Provider”, he made deployments aboard USS NIMITZ (CVN 68), and USS JOHN C STENNIS (CVN 74) in support of Operations IRAQI FREEDOM and ENDURING FREEDOM. 
CDR Light then reported to the “Greyhawks” of VAW 120 as a C-2A Instructor Pilot.  He served as the C-2A Training Officer, C-2A Program Manager, and Assistant Safety Officer.  During his tour, CDR Light was honored as COMACCLOWING C-2A Pilot of the Year-Shore in 2013.  Additionally, he completed Joint Professional Military Education Phase I thru the Naval War College and was awarded the Vice Admiral John T Hayward Award for Outstanding Performance for Academic Year 2013-2014.  CDR Light next reported to the USS DIWGHT D EISENHOWER (CVN-69) as a Catapult and Arresting Gear Officer in August 2014. 
CDR Light returned to the fleet as a Department Head in VRC-40, the “Rawhides” in October 2015.  He served as the Safety Officer, Maintenance Officer, Detachment Officer-in-Charge, and Operations Officer during his tour.  He completed one deployment aboard USS GEORGE H W BUSH (CVN-77) with Detachment TWO supporting Operation INHERENT RESOLVE in 2017. 
Following his department head tour, CDR Light served as a Team Chief and Branch Chief, US Africa Command, J-3 Directorate.  While at AFRICOM, he directly supported planning, execution and reporting on multiple operations and activities in the AFRICOM Area of Operations.  He returned to the Greyhwks of VAW-120 for refresher training in February 2021 and reported to VRC-30 as Executive Officer in July 2021.
CDR Light has accumulated more than 2,900 flight hours and 200 carrier arrested landings in the C-2A including arrestments on all ten Nimitz class CVNs.  His personal awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (3), and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (2).  CDR Light is married to Mrs. Alexis Sturges, a native of Lake Forest, California.  They have four children; Jude (16), Luca (13), Hart (9) and Hyde (7). 

Last Updated: 7 December 2022

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