On March 6, 2021, Pass Christian resident Commander D. Christopher Daniel took command of a Navy Reserve Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) Headquarters unit at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base, New Orleans, Louisiana. He comes to the command assignment after completing seven years in the Louisiana Army National Guard and almost 20 years in the Navy Reserve as a commissioned officer.
Commander (CDR) Daniel previously served in three Navy Reserve Executive Officer assignments in Fort Worth, Texas, Jacksonville, Florida, and Stennis Space Center, Mississippi. He also completed operational tours at Strike Fighter Squadron 204 in New Orleans and Coastal Riverine Group Two, in Little Creek, VA. During the last fifteen years, CDR Daniel has completed counter-terrorism deployments in Iraq, Cuba and Colombia.
As Commanding Officer, CDR Daniel will oversee DIA’s counter-terrorism mission in New Orleans. The assignment includes both full-time and part-time Navy Reserve staff who join the mission on the monthly “drill weekends”. The unit provides part-time Navy Reserve enlisted opportunities for high school graduates to work in the intelligence community in Southeast Louisiana. The unit also provides opportunities for college graduates and professionals to Direct Commission as Navy Officers to lead sailors in its mission.
During the Change of Command ceremony, CDR Daniel addressed the members of the command, and stated “Our work is important. Some tasks may seem routine at times, but our work keeps the lives of our families and our people safe as they exercise freedom in this country and abroad. We should never forget that our decisions could be the one that stands between freedom and the next terrorist attack.”
These remarks were made following a guest speaker who told his story of being blown up in the 2016 terrorist attack at the Brussels Belgium Airport which killed 35 and injured 340 people.
CDR Daniel stated that he is actively seeking talented, intelligent people to grow his team of professionals providing support to national security priorities.
“We particularly value diversity, individuals with foreign language skills, or prior military service. In fact, some of our most talented intelligence professionals are women,” said CDR Daniel.
He also shared that these Navy Reserve assignments often lead to great opportunities for full time careers for the Reserve sailors.
Additionally, CDR Daniel also serves as the Assistant District Attorney assigned to Hancock County, MS where he prosecutes all felony cases.
He is also an Adjunct Professor at Tulane University in the Homeland Security Studies Program teaching courses in Intelligence Analysis and Counter-terrorism Studies.
CDR Daniel is a graduate of Louisiana Tech University (B.A.) and Mississippi College School of Law (J.D.).