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spacerLaura McDonald

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Commander McDonald earned her commission through officer candidate school and completed surface warfare officer school. Her first assignment was aboard USS Germantown (LSD 42), homeported in Sasebo, Japan, and after hull swap, aboard USS Harpers Ferry (LSD 49), where she served as repair division officer and education services officer. In 2004, she reported aboard USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53), homeported in San Diego, where she served as the airborne early warning ground environment integration segment fire control officer and education services officer. In 2006, she transferred into the human resource community and reported to Mine Countermeasures Squadron (MCMRON) Two, where she served as the assistant training and readiness officer for twenty rotational mine countermeasure and mine hunter crews. In 2007, she reported to the U.S. Naval Academy, where she served as the assistant personnel officer. During this tour she deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, where she served as the force generation and manpower officer with Joint Counter Radio Controlled Improvised Explosive Device Electronic Warfare Composite Squadron One (JCCS-1), responsible for deterring improvised explosive devices throughout Iraq and Kuwait. Upon return to the U.S. Naval Academy, she completed her tour as the enlisted personnel officer. In 2011, she reported to Navy Recruiting District Nashville, Tenn., where she served as enlisted programs officer and then as operations officer. In July 2013, she assumed command of the Buffalo Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) in Niagara Falls, New York, and upon successful completion of her command tour, she reported to North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) as the deputy division chief of the personnel, plans, and policy division within the Manpower and Personnel Directorate. She is currently the executive officer of Navy Talent Acquisition Group New Orleans.

 

Commander McDonald's professional military education includes the joint and combined warfighter course from the National Defense University, joint professional military education from the Naval War College, and the human resource officer intermediate course from the Human Resource Center of Excellence at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif. She also earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in speech and communication studies from San Francisco State University, Calif., and a Master of Science Degree in organizational leadership from National University, San Diego, and certification in senior professional human resources from the Society for Human Resource Management.

 

Commander McDonald's military awards and decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (three awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (two awards), Iraqi Campaign Medal, and multiple unit service awards.
 
 
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Updated March 2, 2017 (kbh)