Cmdr. Joe Adams, a native of Corinna, Maine, graduated from the United States Naval Academy in May of 2002 with a Bachelor of Science in aerospace engineering. After completing primary flight training with Training Squadron (VT) 27, he completed intermediate flight training and earned his wings with Helicopter Training Squadron (HT) 8 and was designated a naval aviator in February 2004.
Following Fleet Replacement Squadron (FRS) training with Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 3, Adams reported to the “Black Jacks” of HSC-21 in San Diego. During his tour he served as division officer and quality assurance officer. He qualified as a helicopter aircraft commander and functional check flight instructor in the MH-60S Seahawk. While assigned to HSC-21, Adams deployed aboard USNS Bridge (T-AOE 10) and to Kuwait with the 2515th Naval Air Ambulance Det. where his squadron earned the “Battle E” twice.
In April 2008 he reported to HSC-3 for duties as an FRS instructor pilot. During this tour he served as first lieutenant, tactics officer, and standardization officer completing Seahawk Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) course in Fallon, Nevada. In June 2013, he returned to HSC-21 as the tactics officer where he provided advanced flight instruction to five helicopter dets. in preparation for deployment.
Adams reported to the “Golden Falcons” of HSC-12 in Atsugi, Japan, for his department head tour. During this tour he deployed aboard USS George Washington (CVN 73), USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19), and USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) in the U.S. Pacific Command area of responsibility. While assigned to HSC-12 he served as training officer, det. officer in charge, and operations officer qualifying as officer of the deck (underway) while aboard Blue Ridge.
In 2016, Adams reported to the United States Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island, where he earned a Master of Arts in national security and strategic studies. In January 2017 he reported to United States European Command where he served as executive officer to the J38 Integrated Air and Missile Defense division.
Adams has accumulated more than 3,400 flight hours with more than 3,000 in the MH-60S Seahawk. His personal awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, and numerous service and campaign awards.