Nigerian to command U.S. Navy Guided Missile Destroyer
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A United States Navy commander KELECHI Ndukwe will on 2nd of April 2021 take command of a U.S. Navy Guided Missile Destroyer, USS HALSEY (DDG-97), making him the first Nigerian-American to attain this feat.
Ndukwe currently serves on the Joint Staff in the Force Structure, Resource, and Assessment Directorate (J8) in charge of developing, maintaining, and improving the models, techniques, and capabilities used by combatant commands to conduct studies and analysis.
He has experience working with warships, including destroyers, cruisers and mine countermeasures, with extensive deployments to the Mediterranean Sea, Horn of Africa, Arabian Gulf, Western Pacific Ocean, and South America.
The U.S. Navy commander is also a qualified surface warfare officer and has served as auxiliaries mechanical engineering officer and represented the Navy on Capitol Hill as a congressional liaison officer in the Navy Office of Legislative Affairs.
He has been recognised with various personal, unit-level, and campaign awards, including the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, as well as the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.
Ndukwe holds a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Notre Dame and a master’s degree in National Security and Strategy from the U.S. Naval War College.