Commander Christopher A. Cruz, U.S. Navy, has served in numerous command and leadership positions and is currently en route to serve in the J9 Partnering Directorate at U.S. Southern Command. He was commissioned through ROTC and received a BS in Civil Engineering from the Virginia Military Institute in 1991. In addition, CDR Cruz earned a MA in National Defense and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College. Prior to his current assignment, CDR Cruz served as the Major Staff Placement Officer for Navy Personnel Command. He has over 2,500 flight hours and over 850 carrier arrested landings flying the S-3B Viking.