Lieutenant Colonel David “SOFA” Stark was commissioned on 13 August 2000. Upon completion of The Basic School he attended the Infantry Officers Course (IOC). Upon completion of IOC he attended Naval Flight Training where he was designated as a naval aviator on 20 June 2003 at NAS Kingsville, TX. Following his winging, he attended F/A-18 conversion training at MCAS Miramar, CA with the VMFAT-101 “Sharpshooters”. Following conversion training he remained at MCAS Miramar for follow-on assignment to VMFA(AW)-225 “Vikings”.
During his tour with VMFA(AW)-225, he flew the F/A-18D deploying twice to Iwakuni, Japan as part of the Unit Deployment Program. While serving with the Vikings Captain Stark served as Classified Material Control Center Officer, Ground Training Officer, Schedule Writer and Flight Officer.
In July 2007, Captain Stark reported to Quantico, VA for attendance of Expeditionary Warfare School (EWS) resident course. While at EWS he was accepted to the Personnel Exchange Program (PEP) for assignment with the Canadian Air Force flying the CF-18.
Upon successful completion of EWS, Captain Stark reported to 409 Tactical Flying Squadron (TFS) “Nighthawks” Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada in June of 2008. While assigned to 409TFS he performed duties in support of North American Aerospace Defense Command’s (NORAD) Canadian sector. These duties included several CONUS deployments as well as deployment to Iceland. While assigned to 409TFS he performed duties as alert force commander, future operations officer and training officer.
In June of 2010, Captain Stark reported to 7th Marine Regiment for duty as Air Officer. While assigned with 7th Marines he deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. During his tour with 7th Marines he was promoted to Major.
In March 2012, Major Stark reported to VMFAT-101 “Sharpshooters” for assignment as Instructor Pilot training future F/A-18 pilots and Weapon and Sensor Officers (WSO). During this tour he held duties of Family Readiness Officer, Standardization Officer, and Operations Officer. Upon completion of his tour with the Sharpshooters Major Stark resigned from the Active Component to join the Reserve Component as an active duty member.
In August 2015, Major Stark reported to VMFT-401 “Snipers” at MCAS Yuma to fly the F-5 as an adversary pilot. During this tour, Major Stark made numerous deployments throughout CONUS in support of the Fleet Marine Force as well as MAWTS-1. Major Stark served as the squadron’s future operations officer and aircraft maintenance officer.
In June 2017, Major Stark reported to MATSG-42 for duty as Executive Officer where he was promoted to his current rank. Lieutenant Colonel Stark has accumulated over 2200 flight hours in military aircraft and has qualified as an instructor pilot in both the F/A-18 and F-5.