Rear Adm. Phillips, a native of Annapolis, Maryland, graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and received her commission through the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps in 1983. Her most recent assignment was commander, Expeditionary Strike Group Two.
After commissioning, Phillips served aboard USS Lexington (AVT 16) as 1st division officer, assistant damage control assistant, and repair division officer, and then reported to USS Jason (AR 8) as navigator. In 1989, she reported to USS Cape Cod (AD 43) as chief engineer deploying in support of Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm and then reported to USS San Jose (AFS 7), homeport Agana, Guam, as operations officer, deploying again in support of Operation Desert Storm. For her first shore assignment, Phillips served as a department head instructor at Surface Warfare Officers School Command, Newport, Rhode Island. In 1995 she reported to Cruiser-Destroyer Group 3 as flag secretary, deploying with Carl Vinson Task Group, supporting Operation Desert Strike. Her next assignment was as executive officer on board USS Kinkaid (DD 965), and from there she reported to the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations, serving as an action officer in the Surface Warfare Division, DD 21 Program.
Phillips then reported to PCU Mustin (DDG 89), and had the honor to commission and serve as the first commanding officer of USS Mustin (DDG 89). Her next assignment was as executive assistant to Commander 6th Fleet/commander, Joint Command Lisbon in Lisbon, Portugal. During this tour, Joint Command Lisbon assumed command of the NATO Response Force (NRF), and executed the first ever NRF deployment in support of Pakistani earthquake relief efforts. Phillips next served as commander, Destroyer Squadron 28, in Norfolk, Virginia, detaching in September 2008 and reporting to the Chief of Naval Operations Strategic Studies Group, SSG XXVIII as a fellow from October 2008 to July 2009. She then served on the Chief of Naval Operations Staff as deputy director of Surface Warfare (N86B) and then, director of Surface Warfare (N86).
Phillips’ personal awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit (two awards), Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (two awards) and other service and campaign ribbons.