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CDR Bauer enlisted in the Navy in March 1986 as a Nuclear Electrician (subs). He served on MARIANO G VALLEJO (SSBN 658) and DANIEL WEBSTER (SSBN 626), reaching the rank of EM1(SS) and completing six Ballistic Missile Strategic Deterrent Patrols. He was selected to the Enlisted Commissioning Program in 1992 and attended The Ohio State University. He graduated with honors, earned a BS in Mathematics, and was commissioned in March 1995.
He reported to his first surface ship assignment on board the USS ARLEIGH BURKE (DDG 51) in January 1996 as the Damage Control Assistant. He then served his second junior officer tour on board USS KAUFFMAN (FFG 59) as the Damage Control Assistant, Training Officer, and Navigator/Admin/Legal Officer and deployed with the Standing NATO Forces Mediterranean (SNFM). In June 2000, he reported to the Naval Postgraduate School to begin his masterís degree program where he worked on the CROSSBOW project, a SecDef feasibility study for the Littoral Combatant Ship (LCS), Vertical Takeoff and Landing Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (VTUAV) and Unmanned Combat Aircraft System (N-UCAS) programs. This work earned CDR Bauer an MS in Systems Engineering and Integration and JPME Phase 1 credit.
Following NPS, CDR Bauer served as Engineer on board USS CARR (FFG 52) and deployed to the Western Med and North Arabian Gulf in support of OIF/OEF. He served his second Department Head tour as the Anti-terrorism Officer for COMMANDER, Amphibious Squadron Six (CPR-6) during its transformation into EXPEDITIONARY STRIKE GROUP EIGHT.
CDR Bauerís masterís work came full circle when he returned to shore duty in June 2005 as the Operational Test Director for the VTUAV program. During this tour, he kept the program operationally focused and developed the mission-based test plan to meet the needs of the surface warfighter. He also helped the Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System (STUAS) program move from concept to Program of Record. During this tour, CDR Bauer answered the call to duty and deployed for 11 months to Kirkuk, Iraq on an individual augmentation with the 25th Infantry Division, serving as the 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Teamís Electronic Warfare Officer.
CDR Bauer answered the call again in November 2008 to deploy on 5 days notice to the Black Sea to serve as interim Executive Officer on USS BARRY (DDG 52). CDR Bauer reported to USS OAK HILL on March 2009 and took the watch as Commanding Officer in September 2010.
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