Cmdr. Tom Van Hoozer
A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Cmdr. Tom “Princess” Van Hoozer graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2003 where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Systems Engineering. He completed rotary wing flight training and earned his wings as naval aviator in May of 2005.
Van Hoozer began his naval aviation service assigned to the “Chargers” of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS) 14, then homeported at Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Japan as a member of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5. He completed multiple deployments to 7th Fleet aboard the USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) and the USS George Washington (CVN 73).
Van Hoozer next reported to Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Pacific (HSCWSP) in San Diego as a Seahawk Weapons and Tactics instructor. While at HSCWSP, he was the Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) subject matter expert and also completed the Joint Terminal Attack Controller syllabus. Additionally, he earned his Masters of Business Administration degree from Arizona State University.
Van Hoozer subsequently joined the “Black Knights” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 4, attached to CVW-2 and the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) where he focused on implementing and integrating the MH-60S’s newly fielded 20mm and 2.75” rocket forward firing weapons systems.
For his department head tour, Van Hoozer returned to HSC-14, then assigned to CVW-9 and the USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74). During his tour, he qualified as CVW-9’s first Rotary Wing Strike Lead and was honored to receive the Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific Navy and Marine Association Leadership Award.
After leaving HSC-14, Van Hoozer reported to Colorado Springs as part of the Defense Support of Civil Authorities branch of the USNORTHCOM Future Operations division (NC-J35), helping organize Title 10 Active Duty support to FEMA for disaster relief for Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, and Florence.
Van Hoozer’s personal decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Commendation Medal, Navy Commendation Medals, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals and various campaign and unit awards. He has accumulated over 2,500 flight hours in the H-60.