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Commanding Officer

Commanding Officer

A native of Staten Island, New York, Captain Paul “Party Boy” Flores graduated from the University of Florida in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology. He received his commission through Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, Florida in September 1997.  He holds master’s degrees in Strategic Studies and National Security Strategy.

Following designation as a naval aviator in September 1999, Flores reported to the VAW-120 Greyhawks for further flight training and carrier qualification in the E-2C Hawkeye, and subsequently reported to the Wallbangers of VAW-117 for his initial fleet assignment.  From 2000 to 2003, Flores completed two combat deployments, one aboard USS CARL VINSON (CVN 70) in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM, and one aboard USS NIMITZ (CVN 68) in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM.

After his initial fleet tour, Flores was a strike flight training instructor with VT-21 Redhawks. He also served as standardization instructor, schedules officer, and weapons detachment officer in charge. In April 2008, Flores reported to the Black Eagles of VAW-113 and served as safety, administration, and maintenance officer. He completed three deployments aboard USS RONALD REAGAN (CVN 76) in support of Operations ENDURING FREEDOM, IRAQI FREEDOM, and TOMODACHI. 

Flores reported to Provincial Reconstruction Team, Paktika, Afghanistan in November 2011, where he served as executive officer and deputy commander for 10 months, leading counterinsurgency operations in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM.

Flores attended the Naval War College in December 2012, and in July 2014, reported to the Golden Hawks of VAW-112 where he served as executive officer and commanding officer. As commanding officer, he deployed aboard USS JOHN C. STENNIS (CVN 74) in support of 2016 WESTPAC, and 2016 RIMPAC exercise. He then led the Golden Hawks through squadron deactivation. In July 2017, he reported to the National War College earning a second master’s degree.

In July 2018, Flores reported to Allied Joint Force Command Naples, where he served as the deputy director of the Joint Operations Center and the Senior Naval Representative.

He assumed duties as Commanding Officer, NAS Whiting Field, in January 2021.

Flores has accumulated more than 6,000 military flight hours and over 1,000 carrier landings.

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