Capt. Michael D. Nordeen
Commanding Officer, USS Mesa Verde (LPD 19)
16 December 2022
Captain Michael D. Nordeen is the Commanding Officer of USS MESA VERDE. His military service began with his enlistment in the United States Army. He was later admitted to West Point where he graduated with honors, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a commission as an Ensign in the United States Navy.
Designated a Naval Aviator, he served at sea in Fighter Squadron THREE ONE, Strike Fighter Squadron THREE TWO, commanded Strike Fighter Squadron TWO ONE ONE, and most recently served as the Executive Officer of the nuclear powered aircraft carrier USS GEORGE WASHINGTON. He planned, executed, and led missions in Operations ENDURING FREEDOM, SOUTHERN WATCH, IRAQI FREEDOM, NEW DAWN, and INHERENT RESOLVE. He was awarded the Tomcatter Trophy for leadership and esprit de corps during his tenure at Fighter Squadron THREE ONE and Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic recognized Strike Fighter Squadron TWO ONE ONE as the most outstanding squadron on the east coast during Captain Nordeen’s tenure in command.
Ashore, Captain Nordeen served at United States Central Command as Aide-de-Camp to the Commander and as an executive officer to the Deputy Commander. He is designated a Joint Qualified Officer. He has also served on the Navy staff where he represented Navy equities throughout the Defense Department’s 2013 Strategic Choices and Management Review and the 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review.
Captain Nordeen is an Olmsted Scholar. He studied Russian at the Defense Language Institute before earning a Master of Science in International Economics from Saint Petersburg State University, Russia and an MBA with greatest distinction from Vlerick Business School, Belgium. He earned a Diploma in Command and Staff from the United States Naval War College and is a graduate of the Joint and Combined Warfighting School at the Joint Forces Staff College. He completed a Federal Executive Fellowship at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University where he conducted and presented research on contemporary geo-strategic issues and graduated with distinction from the Navy Nuclear Power School prior to his tour aboard USS GEORGE WASHINGTON. He is a fluent Russian speaker.
He has been awarded the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (2), Individual Action Air Medal with Combat Valor, Strike Flight Air Medal (5), Navy Commendation Medal with Combat Valor, and the Navy Achievement Medal (3) in addition to other awards and campaign medals. He has flown over 2000 hours in F-14 and FA-18 aircraft and has 490 carrier arrested landings.