Lee Warwick was 18 years old when he enlisted in the United States Navy. It was 2001 and during boot camp, the 9/11 terrorist attacks occurred drastically changing the United States forever.
Warwick has dedicated the last fourteen years to the Navy, rising in ranks to Lieutenant Junior Grade.
In 2005, he cross-rated, or changed enlisted jobs, to become an IT and was sent to his first IT posting in Bahrain at Joint Mobile Ashore Support (JMAST). Less than a month later, his team deployed to Pakistan after the 2005 Kashmir 8.2 magnitude earthquake shattered the Kashmir region of Pakistan. JMAST members were among the first “boots on the ground” personnel in the area. When he was through with his working shift, Warwick often volunteered to deliver supplies and transport injured Pakistanis out of devastated areas.
“Pakistan was the best posting in my career,” Warwick shared. “Opening the world’s eyes to what the US can contribute and actually helping out was amazing.”
In 2009, he was selected for a commissioning program that sent Warwick to college to attain a bachelor’s degree and commission as a Naval Officer. Following in the footsteps of his beautiful wife, a fellow Florida State University alumnus, Warwick chose FSU and completed a degree in Information Technology with a minor in Naval Science from Florida A&M University. After graduation in the spring of 2012, he commissioned as an Ensign/O1.
Today, you can find Warwick in Diego Garcia, as the Matériel Officer, overseeing 10 pre-positioning ships assuring that each ship is outfitted with the needed equipment. The small British Indian Ocean Territory boasts a population of 4,200, mainly comprised of military professionals. Stretching 175 square miles, Diego Garcia is beneath Asia, east of Africa. In the end of May, Warwick participated in a bike ride that went from one end of the island to the other end, aptly named the Diego Garcia tip-to-tip bike ride. It comprised of a 37 mile ride with approximately 20 miles in the rainforest.
In October, Warwick will be re-designated as an Information Professional (IP). The prestigious position accounts for 1% of Naval Officers, around 545 officers. The new position coincides with Warwick’s graduation from the Information Systems Management master’s program at American Sentinel University. To advance as a commissioned officer, at least one master’s degree is required; for IP officers, a technical master’s is mandatory.
“The Navy started me in the right direction and FSU has helped me continue it,” said Warwick. “It influenced my career tremendously. I would not have been able to be a commissioned officer or be relevant in the IT field.”
Five years from now, Warwick will be nearing 20 years of service with the Navy. He sees himself with his family, watching his two sons grow and advancing his IT skills. He will possibly retire after 20 years in the service and transition to a civilian IT career or continue to advance as an IP officer; with FSU and the United States Navy, his options are unlimited.