A native of Carmel, California, Rear Adm. Rich Brophy received his commission in 1991 from the U.S. Naval Academy, and in 1994 was designated a Naval Aviator. He is a graduate of the U.S. Navy Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN), Troy State University and U.S. Naval War College.
Brophy's operational assignments include tours with VFA 105 and VFA 81. He has completed deployments on USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), USS Enterprise (CVN 65), USS George Washington (CVN 73), USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67), USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) and USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74).
His shore assignments include an instructor tour with VFA 106; aide/flag lieutenant to the commander of the North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command; the executive assistant and Sea Strike branch head to OPNAV Analysis and Assessment Division (N81); deputy executive assistant to the Vice Chief of Naval Operations; head, Carrier Strike Aircraft and Programs (N98) and executive assistant to OPNAV N3N5.
Command tours include Chief of Naval Air Training; Carrier Strike Group FOUR; Commander, Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center; Carrier Air Wing 9 and VFA 115.
Brophy has logged over 4,100 flight hours, 100 combat missions and accumulated over 1000 carrier-arrested landings. He was a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Seminar XXI fellow, and the 2017 "Tailhooker of the Year" awarded by the Tailhook association. His decorations include the Legion of Merit (five Awards), Bronze Star, Joint Meritorious Service Award, Meritorious Service Award, individual Air Medal with Combat "V", five Strike/Flight Air Medals, and other personal, campaign and service ribbons.