United States Navy
A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Commander Withers graduated cum laude from Occidental College in 1992. After completing a year of graduate study as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Saarbruecken, Germany, he attended Georgetown University where he earned a Master’s Degree from the School of Foreign Service in 1995.
A Distinguished Graduate of Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, FL, Commander Withers was designated a naval aviator in 1999 and subsequently reported to Patrol Squadron 4 (VP-4) in Kaneohe, HI.
During his initial fleet tour, he completed two SEVENTH Fleet deployments and one FIFTH Fleet deployment. He was designated an Instructor Pilot and Mission Commander and served as the squadron’s Strike Officer and Quality Assurance Officer.
In September 2003, he reported to Training Squadron 10 where he instructed future naval flight officers in the T-6A “Texan” and served as Flight Lead and Aviation Safety Officer.
Commander Withers was selected as an Olmsted Scholar in 2005 . After attending Spanish language training at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, he completed two years of graduate study in public policy at the University of Torcuato di Tella in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Commander Withers returned to VP-4 as a Department Head in August 2008 where he completed a FIFTH Fleet deployment and served as the squadron’s Tactics Officer, Administrative Officer, and Maintenance Officer.
In November 2010, he was assigned to the Operations Directorate (N3) of the permanently embarked Commander, SEVENTH Fleet where he has served as the Air Operations Officer and Deputy Fires Officer.
Commander Withers has participated in Operations Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, and Tomodachi (Japan, 2011). His awards include the Air Medal (3 Strike/Flight awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (2 awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and numerous campaign and service medals.
He reported as Executive Officer to Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe Bay in May 2012.