Tomorrow, Captain Marc Ratkus retires after 40 years of service.  A highly respected Naval Officer, he served our great nation and Navy with honor and distinction as and a Cryptologist Warfare Officer.  Enlisting in the Navy as an E-1 through the delayed entry program, Marc Ratkus advanced to Chief Petty Officer and selected to Chief Warrant Officer, Limited Duty Officer and finally Special Duty Officer (Cryptologic Warfare), achieving the rank of Captain!  Captain Ratkus’ biography, command achievements and End of Tour award follow:

Captain Marc W. Ratkus
Commanding Officer
Center for Information Warfare Training

Capt. Ratkus, a native of North Carolina, earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Hawaii Pacific University, a Master of Arts in Management from Webster University, a master’s-level military sciences certificate from the U. S. Army Command and General Staff College and a master’s-level technical certificate in computer science from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School.

Ratkus enlisted in the Navy in 1983 and served 14 years in the cryptologic technician (maintenance) rating, attaining the rank of chief petty officer. In 1997, he commissioned as a chief warrant officer, and in 2000, was selected for promotion to Lt. j.g. through the limited duty officer program. In 2002, he laterally transferred to the restricted line community as a cryptologic warfare officer.

His operational assignments include USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70); USS Virginia (CGN 38); USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71); USS Gettysburg (CG 64); Carrier Strike Group 8; and a deployment to Afghanistan.

His shore assignments include Naval Technical Training Center, Corry Station, Pensacola, Florida; Naval Security Group Det. Crane, Indiana; Naval Security Group Activity Kunia, Hawaii; Naval Security Group Activity Sugar Grove, West Virginia; U.S. Naval Forces Europe/U.S. 6th Fleet; U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/U.S. 5th Fleet; Navy Personnel Command; Center for Information Warfare Training; and Tactical Training Group Atlantic.

Additionally, he commanded Navy Information Operations Command Colorado and served as the director of operations for the National Security Agency / Central Security Service Georgia.

Ratkus assumed command of the Center for Information Warfare Training, July 24, 2020.

Qualified as an information warfare and surface warfare officer, his personal awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (four awards), Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (six awards), Joint Service Achievement Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (four awards), and various other unit and campaign awards.

Listed below are some of Captain Marc Ratkus’ achievements as the commanding officer, Center for Information Warfare Training (CIWT) Pensacola.

  • Provided outstanding leadership to one of the largest and most complex learning centers in the Naval Education and Training Command domain, achieving outstanding result throughout a large domain with training
  • Provided outstanding leadership for all Information Warfare training throughout the navy which included 10 enlisted ratings, three officer communities and more than 130 courses.  Led the training of more than 24,000 students annually.
  • Executed the consolidation of seven Apprentice Cryptologic Language Program Cryptologic Technician – Interpretive (CTI) language courses of instruction from four CIWTC Learning Sites to a signal consolidated learning sites at IWTC Monterey DET Goodfellow Air located at Goodfellow Force Base (GAFB), San Angelo, TX.  
  • Initiated the development of an Integrated Fires Officer Course, as well as a Direct Support Subsurface Officer Course addressing longstanding formal training gaps for Cryptologic Warfare Officers within both the junior and senior level.
  • Overhauled of the Cryptologic Warfare Officer Basic Course which had been unfounded for updates in excess of 10 years. 
  • As Executive Agent for the National Security Agency, guided the development and implementation of the new training standards in support of the Cryptologic Training Council for the Communications Signals Collection Course, Intermediate Signals Course, and Advanced Signals Analysis Course that significantly modernized signals collection.
  • Coordinated with four commands in the development, delivery, and certification of AN/SLQ-32(V)6 Multipurpose Reconfigurable Training System 3 Dimensional (MRTS-3D) system and in the creation of curriculum to support new MRTS-3D technical training equipment. 
  • Achieved the Council on Education (COE) 45 Years of Accreditation award in November 2020, the longest tenured command in the US Navy. 
  • Re-energized fleet communicator training in the Journeyman Communication Course C-school through targeted and innovated approach to replace former and antiquated Virtual Radio Room simulation training solution with the MRTS-3D tactical and immersive training delivery methodology. 
  • Spearheaded the critical efforts to modernize cyber mission force training by leveraging the Persistent Cyber Training Environment, the US Cyber Command program of record training and exercise solution.
  • Personally recognized by Commander, NETC for consistently demonstrated and documented results in the command’s MD-715 reports that reflect commitment to the Model EEO Program. 
  • Set the example as Commanding Officer for command climate.  He enforced all congressionally mandated requirements and ensured four subordinate Commanding Officers, and two Officers-in-Charge completed 18 face-to-face assessment debriefs.  He mastered both military and civilian talent management with organizational innovation and personally cultured and environment based on professionalism, dignity, and respect.
  • Throughout the historic and unprecedented COVID-19 crisis, he maintained and protected the Information Warfare community’s accession supply chain across a geographically diverse domain.  Designated as a “mission essential” function of the Navy, new accession students from boot camp through intermediate training into their ultimate duty station were protected in a special status to ensure continued manpower to the worldwide fleet. Additionally, the domain achieved a 99 percent vaccination rate, allowing his subordinate commands to execute their training mission more freely.
  • Seized the initiative by directing domain-wide development of Warrior Toughness program that reinforced key concepts and skillsets (e.g. Mind-Body-Soul, Recalibrate,” Mental Imagery Rehearsal) for accession pipeline students.

Legion of Merit

Congratulations Skipper on a truly remarkable career. We wish you and your family the very best in the next chapter. Fair Winds and Following Seas.

Very Respectfully,
Station HYPO