Commander Robert W. Kurrle
CDR Robert Kurrle, Jr. is from Statesville, North Carolina. He initially attended New Mexico Military Institute through the Naval Academy foundation program. He then went on to attend the United States Naval Academy, where he graduated in May 2002, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering. He earned his wings of gold in January 2004 and reported to the "Gladiators" of VFA-106 at NAS Oceana, VA to receive his initial training in the F/A-18C.
CDR Kurrle’s first operational tour was with the "Blue Blasters" of VFA-34 with whom he completed the last at sea sustainment for USS JOHN F. KENNEDY (CV 67) and deployed onboard USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN (CVN 72) in support of operations in the Western Pacific. In February 2008, he returned to VFA-106 as an instructor pilot in the F/A-18A-F, where he also served as the Legal Officer and Landing Signal Officer.
CDR Kurrle was then selected for the Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron, the Blue Angels, based at NAS Pensacola, FL. He joined the Blue Angels for the 2010 and 2011 show seasons, where he flew as Left Wingman (#3) and Slot Pilot (#4). In 2011 he also served as the team’s training officer and airborne safety officer.
Following his tour with the Blue Angels, CDR Kurrle attended Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA. He graduated in June 2013 with a Master of Business Administration and a Master of Arts in Security Studies, receiving an Outstanding Thesis award.
In October 2013, CDR Kurrle again joined VFA-34, where he served as the Administration, Safety, Maintenance, and Operations Department Head. While with the Blue Blasters, he participated in the 2014 "Rim of the Pacific" Exercise onboard USS RONALD REAGAN (CVN 76) and the 2015 "Southern Seas" deployment onboard USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN 73).
Following his Department Head tour, CDR Kurrle was assigned to Joint Staff, J7 Directorate, working with Deploying Joint Task Force Headquarters and Global Response Force Headquarters across DoD. He also worked in the nascent stages of Global Integration. While at Joint Staff he attended Joint Forces Staff College to complete JPME II.
Commander Kurrle reported to the “Golden Warriors” of VFA-87 as Executive Officer in September 2020 and has accumulated over 3,000 flight hours.