In 1995, LtCol Shea was commissioned a Second Lieutenant after graduating from the University of Pittsburgh with an NROTC Scholarship. He reported to The Basic School and upon graduation transferred to Marine Air Training Support Group 21 for primary flight training in Milton, FL. After completing primary flight training at VT-2 and helicopter intermediate and advanced training at HT-8, he earned his wings in October of 1997.
In 1997, LtCol Shea transferred to HMT-303 for initial UH-1N flight training. Upon completion of training at HMT-303, he reported to HMLA-267 at Camp Pendleton. In the summer of 1998 he deployed to Okinawa, Japan with HMLA-267 as Squadron Pilot and Adjutant as a part of the Unit Deployment Program.
In 2000, LtCol Shea served as the Intelligence Officer, Aviation Safety Officer and UH-1N NATOPS Officer while at Camp Pendleton and deployed with HMM-265 as the Airframes Division OIC as a part of the 31st MEU.
In 2001, after returning from deployment on the 31st MEU, LtCol Shea transferred to 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 29 Palms, California as a Forward Air Controller and Air Officer.
In 2002, he transferred to the Naval Safety Center in Norfolk, Virginia to be the H-1 Analyst and Night Vision Device Analyst. During this tour, LtCol Shea attained the qualification of a Transport Plane Commander in three UC-12 variants and was also designated a Culture Workshop Facilitator. As a Culture Workshop Facilitator, he assisted over 40 Commanding Officers with their unit organizational culture and completed active service in 2006.
In 2009, LtCol Shea affiliated with Marine Forces Reserve, Marine Forces Command, Individual Mobilization Augmentee, Norfolk, Virginia as Air Officer, Forward Air Controller and Future and Current Operations Officer. In this capacity, he participated in two European large force exercises, Austere Challenge 10 and 11, providing support to coalition forces on the USS Mount Whitney in Italy, as well as at the Grafenwoehr Training Area in Germany.
In 2011, LtCol Shea joined 4th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company in West Palm Beach, Florida as Air Officer, 1st Brigade Platoon Commander, and then Executive Officer completing several OCONUS exercises in support of MARFOREUR.
In 2016, LtCol Shea assumed Command of 6th ANGLICO and has participated in RITX, RIMPAC and is slated for Agile Spirit in the Republic of Georgia and has continued his FAC and Parachutist currency through participation in FAC/JTAC and jump operations while in Command.
LtCol Shea’s service education includes completion of US Air Force’s Dynamics of International Terrorism and Special Operations Planning Courses, Naval Aviation Flight Training, UH-1N Basic, Instructor and Functional Check Pilot syllabi, UC-12 Pilot Course, Aviation Safety Officer, Laser Safety Officer, US Air Force’s Joint Firepower Controller, Tactical Air Control Party, Fire Support Coordination, and US Army Airborne. His Professional Military Education includes USMC Warfighting Skills, Amphibious Warfare, and Command and Staff. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Russian from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and a Master of Business Administration from The Mason School of Business at the College of William and Mary. His professional certifications include Project Management Professional (PMP) and a Certified Safety Professional (CSP).
LtCol Shea’s awards and decorations include Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with 2 Gold Stars, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and Humanitarian Service Medal.
In his civilian career, he owns an aerospace safety and risk management consulting company with six employees and clients that include NASA, FAA, Customs and Border Protection and several international airports including San Francisco and Denver. He is an Associate Professor for Graduate and Undergraduate Safety and Business courses for Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.