Cmdr. James "Jim" Brownlee is a native of Upper Black Eddy, Pennsylvania, where he graduated from Palisades Senior High School. He then graduated from the University of Nebraska at Kearney with a Bachelor of Science in Airway Science Management. Following graduation, Brownlee joined the U.S. Navy and attended Officer Candidate School at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida.
Brownlee graduated OCS in 1995 and was commissioned an Ensign in the U.S. 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 1997.
Following Fleet Replacement Pilot training at AMCM Weapon Systems Training School and Marine Heavy Helicopter Training Squadron (HMHT) 302, Marine Corps Air Station New River, North Carolina, in 1998, he reported to Helicopter Combat Support Squadron (HC) 4 aboard Naval Air Station Sigonella, Italy in 1998. He completed numerous deployments to Bahrain and the Sixth Fleet. In 2001, he transferred to HC-3 in San Diego to begin duty as a Naval Flight Instructor.
Brownlee served aboard USS Nassau (LHA 4) as Safety Officer from 2004 to 2005, obtaining his Officer of the Deck (Underway) and Command Duty Officer Qualifications.
His Department Head tour was with HC-4 at Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia, from 2005 to 2007. While there, he served as Administration Officer, Operations Officer and Officer in Charge. Following the deactivation of HC-4 in 2007, he report to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 2 as Operations Officer.
Next, he reported to the Supreme Allied Command Transformation in Norfolk, working on Long Term Capability Requirements as part of the NATO Defense Planning Process. Here he also earned his Joint Professional Military Education Phase I and Master’s Degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.
In 2012 Brownlee was assigned to Carrier Strike Group 12 onboard USS Enterprise (CVN 65), deployed to Fifth and Sixth Fleet for 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, Brownlee was assigned to Tactical Training Group Atlantic, NS Dam Neck, Virginia. He served as the Command and Control Module Head, training all of the East Coast Strike Groups and Amphibious Ready Groups for upcoming deployments.
Brownlee was the Executive Officer for NAS Whiting Field, Milton, Florida, from 2018 to 2021, where NASWF earned the Commander, Navy Installations Command Installation Excellence Award for 2021.
Brownlee’s awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corp Commendation (two gold stars), Navy and Marine Corp Achievement (gold star) and numerous unit and campaign awards.
Last Updated: 8 June 2022