Commander James A. Brownlee is a native of Upper Black Eddy, PA., where he graduated from Palisades Senior High School. He was then accepted and graduated from the University of Nebraska at Kearney with a Bachelor of Science in Airway Science Management. Following graduation, CDR Brownlee entered the United States Navy and attended Officer Candidate School at NAS Pensacola, Florida.
CDR Brownlee graduated OCS in August 1995 and was commissioned an Ensign in the United States Naval Reserve. He attended primary flight training in Corpus Christi, Texas and Advanced Flight Training at NAS Whiting Field. He was designated a Naval Aviator in August 1997.
Following initial Fleet Replacement Pilot training at AMCM Weapon Systems Training School (AWSTS) and Helicopter Marine Training Squadron 302, MCAS New River, North Carolina in 1998, he reported to Helicopter Combat Support Squadron FOUR (HC-4), Naval Air Station Sigonella, Italy in April 1998. He completed numerous deployments to Bahrain and SIXTH Fleet AOR’s. In 2001, he transferred to Helicopter Combat Support Squadron THREE (HC-3) in San Diego, California to begin duty as a Naval Flight Instructor.
CDR Brownlee served aboard the USS NASSAU (LHA 4) as Safety Officer from 2004 to 2005, obtaining his Officer of the Deck (Underway) and Command Duty Officer Qualification.
His Department Head tour was with HC-4 NS Norfolk from 2005 to 2007. While there he served as Administrations Officer and Operations Officer and Officer in Charge. Following the deactivation of HC-4 in 2007, he reported to HSC-2 as Operations Officer.
Following that tour, he reported to the Supreme Allied Command Transformation in Norfolk VA, working on Long Term Capability Requirements as part of the NATO Defense Planning Process. While there, he earned his Joint Professional Military Education Phase I and Master’s Degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.
In 2012, CDR Brownlee was assigned to Carrier Strike Group 12 onboard the USS ENTERPRISE (CVN 65) deployed to FIFTH and SIXTH Fleet for USS ENTERPRISE’S final deployment. He served as the Strike Groups Anti-terrorism / Force Protection Officer and Battle Watch Captain for the Strike Group Commander.
From 2014 to 2017, CDR Brownlee was assigned to Tactical Training Group Atlantic, NS Dam Neck, Virginia Beach VA. He served as the Command and Control Module Head, training all of the East Coast Carrier Strike Groups and Amphibious Ready Groups for upcoming deployments.
CDR Brownlee is currently the Executive Officer for NAS Whiting Field, Milton FL.
CDR Brownlee’s awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation (with two gold stars), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement (with gold star) and numerous unit and campaign awards.