Captain Jeff Ruth,
USS Nimitz Commanding Officer
Born in Key West, Fla., Captain Ruth grew up in San Diego, Calif. and graduated with distinction from the United States Naval Academy in 1986 with a Bachelor of Science degree in aeronautical engineering. He reported to Flight School at Naval Air Station Pensacola later that year, and was designated a Naval Flight Officer in January 1988.
Captain Ruth assumed command of USS Nimitz (CVN 68) March 29, 2012. He previously commanded the U.S. Sixth Fleet’s flagship, USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) home ported in Gaeta, Italy from August 2010 to September 2011, and Electronic Attack Squadron 137 (VAQ-137) also known as the "Rooks," from October 2003 to March 2004.
Captain Ruth‘s other fleet assignments include a Division Officer tour with the “Bounty Hunters” of Strike Fighter Squadron 2 (VF-2) from June 1989 to April 1992, when he flew 43 combat missions in support of Operation Desert Storm, and a Department Head tour with the Patriots of VAQ-140 from January 1998 to August 2000, when he flew 40 combat missions in support of Operation Allied Force. Additionally, he served as Navigator onboard USS George Washington (CVN 73) from March 2005 to June 2006 and Executive Officer on board USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) from March 2008 to December 2009.
Ashore, Captain Ruth attended the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif. and the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School at NAS Patuxent River, Md., as part of the NPS/TPS Co-op program from June 1992 to December 1994. Upon completion of the course he was awarded a master’s degree in aeronautical engineering. Captain Ruth’s next assignment was as the F-14D Project Officer at Naval Air Warfare Center, Point Mugu, Calif. from January 1995 to March 1997. He has also served as an operational planner on the staff of the Commander, Allied Forces North Europe in Brunssum, the Netherlands from August 2000 to August 2002 and attended Nuclear Power Training, July 2007 to February 2008.
Captain Ruth has been awarded the Legion of Merit, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (3 awards), The Air Medal (5 individual awards with Combat “V” and 8 Strike/Flight), the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (3 Awards, 1 with Combat “V”), and other personal, unit and campaign awards. He also holds a master’s degree in business administration from Colorado State University.