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Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14 “Tophatters”

Commander John Keith

Executive Officer, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14

Photo By: 230731-N-XO554-1001.JPG
VIRIN: 230731-N-XO554-1001
CDR John Keith, a native of Kenilworth, Illlinois, graduated from the Naval Academy in 2006 with a Bachelor of Science in Political Science.  He then attended flight school flying the T-45 Goshawk jet trainer with the VT-22 Golden Eagles in Kingsville, TX, ultimately earning his wings of gold in 2009.  Following his winging, he remained with VT-22 as a Selectively Retained Graduate Instructor Pilot until reporting as a student at the VFA-106 Gladiators onboard NAS Oceana for initial fleet training in
the F/A-18C Hornet.

Upon completion of the FRS in March 2011, CDR Keith was assigned to the VFA-37 Raging Bulls, flying the Hornet and deploying aboard the USS HARRY S. TRUMAN (CVN-75) in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM.  In January 2014 he returned to VFA-106 as an Instructor Pilot in the F/A-18A-F Hornet and Super Hornet.  There CDR Keith served as the F/A-18A-D NATOPS Program Manager, Fighter Phase Standardization Instructor Pilot, and also led the U.S. Navy Hornet Tactical Demonstration Team.  In November 2016, he joined Carrier Strike Group FOUR as a Strike Warfare evaluator, ensuring Strike and Amphibious Readiness Groups were certified for operational deployments. 
From October 2017 to December 2020, he completed duties as a Department Head with the VFA-105 Gunslingers flying the F/A-18E Super Hornet, serving as the Safety, Admin, Maintenance, and Operations Officer, ultimately deploying aboard the USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (CVN-69) in support of Operation FREEDOM'S SENTINEL. 
Following his department head tour, he reported to Joint Staff J7 as a member of the Deployable Training Team, assisting Combatant Commands throughout the globe in support of exercises and current and future operational planning and execution.  He selected for squadron command in March 2021 and reported to the VFA-14 Tophatters as Executive Officer in July 2023.
CDR Keith has accumulated 2,900 flight hours and his awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal, Navy Commendation Medal (3), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Meritorious Unit Commendation, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, and various service awards and ribbons.


Commander Casey McCain

Commanding Officer, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14

Commander John Keith

Executive Officer, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14

Command Chief Robert J. Buschman II

Command Chief, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14

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