Prior to these assignments, he held various high performance operational and research and development leadership positions in Aviation, Safety, Unmanned Systems, Combat Search and Rescue, oceanography, meteorology, remote sensing and mapping, charting and geodesy. He left active duty in the United States Navy as a Captain following completion of a 30-year officer career and 6 years enlisted service.
Mr. Peterson was awarded a B.S. degree in physics from Carroll College and a M.S. in oceanography from the Naval Postgraduate School. He is a graduate of the Federal Quality Institute Executive Leadership/Management program. He holds a Naval Aviator, Aviation Safety Officer, and Weapons Systems Acquisition Program Manager designation as well as Heavy Helicopter and Commercial Pilot licenses. He has unique hands on and leadership experience for both unmanned air and underwater systems program development and operations and Rapid Prototyping and Development of applications for next generation satellite systems.
His awards include the first NASA Silver Achievement Medal for leadership in Applied Sciences. , the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Medal (Two single action and five strike fight awards), and the Navy Commendation Medal. Captain Peterson was credited with numerous air sea rescues of military and civilian personnel during his career, including fourteen of which were downed USMC/Navy/USAF airmen in the Coastal / waters and harbors off N. Vietnam, Six of which were under severe Combat Conditions.
He is active in numerous national, state, and military professional societies. He was the IEEE(OES) Deputy General Chair for the planning and execution of the highly successful October 2020 virtual IEEE(OES) /MTS Oceans 2020 Singapore – U.S. Gulf Coast Conference and is currently the Deputy General Chair for planning and organizing the in-person IEEE(OES) /MTS Oceans 2023 U.S. Gulf Coast Conference.