photo of cassidy norman

Commanding Officer, USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), United States Navy

B.S. ASE 1993, The University of Texas at Austin
M.S. Aviation Systems 2003, The University of Tennessee
M.S. National Security and Strategic Studies 2009, U.S. Naval War College

As the 12th commanding officer of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier JOHN C. STENNIS, Cassidy Norman is in charge of 2,700 active-duty Sailors. After 25 years of commissioned service to our nation, the STENNIS is currently in mid-life overhaul, including nuclear refueling and a complex overhaul of the entire ship, which will provide the 90,000-ton vessel a quarter of a century more years of active service protecting our shorelines. In addition to his duties as the ship’s Captain, he continues to fly the F/A-18 and chairs a readiness council for all aircraft carriers in the US Navy. 

Norman received his B.S. degree in aerospace engineering from The University of Texas at Austin. While serving as a test pilot after graduating from the US Naval Test Pilot School, he earned an M.S. degree in aviation systems from the University of Tennessee. Later, after attending U.S. Naval War College, he earned an M.S. degree in national security and strategic studies. He is also a graduate of the Joint Forces Staff College and the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program.

During ten aircraft carrier deployments over the twenty-six years, Norman supported Operations Southern Watch in the Arabian Gulf, Iraqi Freedom in Iraq, Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Inherent Resolve in Syria. He lived in Japan for a tour in VFA-192, integrated the new Joint Direct Attack Munition while underway during combat operations on USS John F. Kennedy as Strike Operations Officer in CVW-17, led each of the main departments (safety, maintenance, and operations) in VFA-136, and managed an aircraft carrier as the Executive Officer of USS Harry S. Truman, which earned the Battle “E” Award twice during his tour.

Norman commanded VFA-83 on USS Dwight D. Eisenhower in 2010, earning back-to-back Golden Wrench Awards for Maintenance Excellence. Homeported in Italy, he also commanded the U.S. Sixth Fleet Flagship, USS Mount Whitney, in support of multiple NATO, U.S. Second Fleet and U.S. Sixth Fleet exercises in the Baltic and Mediterranean Seas in 2019 and 2020.

Ashore, he served as the Navy’s AMRAAM Project Officer and as a test pilot for over 40 weapons test programs out of Point Mugu, CA, where he was selected as the 2003 VX-30 Test Pilot of the Year. In the Pentagon, he served in the Joint Chiefs of Staff (J8), where he supported several Strategic Seminars and Interagency war games for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.  He also served as the Chief of Staff for Navy Warfare Development Command in Norfolk, VA.

Norman logged 702 arrested landing across the six most recent classes of aircraft carriers, from USS Independence to USS Gerald R. Ford. He has flown 116 combat missions in the F/A-18 and 3,000 flight hours in 44 different types of aircraft.

He was the lead pilot in a section of F/A-18s that flew over a UT baseball game in March of 2011 and again excited the Longhorn crowd by flying over a UT football game in November of 2011.  That same year, he flew an F/A-18 to Bergstrom Airport as part of Navy Week Austin. In addition to providing tours of the F/A-18 to the public, he gave presentations to the UT Navy ROTC unit, the Navy League Austin, and local high schools and middle schools.

Norman is currently stationed in Hampton Roads, VA with his wife Michelle (BS PEN 1992, The University of Texas at Austin) and their daughter and son.