Vice Adm. David Buss is a native of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and graduated with distinction from the United States Naval Academy in 1978. He was designated a naval flight officer and completed initial training in the venerable A-6 Intruder in 1979.
Buss’ early flying assignments include aircraft carrier-based squadron tours aboard USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69), USS Nimitz (CVN 68) and USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71). He commanded Attack Squadron 34, the "Blue Blasters," embarked in USS George Washington (CVN 73) in 1995-96. The "Blasters" were one of the Navy’s last A-6 squadrons. Following squadron command, Buss completed Naval Nuclear Propulsion training and served as executive officer on Nimitz.
He commanded USS Sacramento (AOE 1) during the opening stages of Operation Enduring Freedom following the terrorist attacks on 9/11. Buss then commanded USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), our nation’s 7th Nimitz-class carrier, from 2003 through 2006.
As a flag officer, Buss has served twice on the Chief of Naval Operations’ (CNO) staff as well as serving 14 months in Baghdad, Iraq, as director, Strategy/Plans/Assessments (J-5). He commanded Carrier Strike Group 12, USS Enterprise Carrier Strike Group, and commanded Task Force 20 while also serving as deputy commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command in Norfolk, Virginia.
Buss has been privileged to serve with teams that excelled in combat operations and he wears the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit (5 awards), Distinguished Flying Cross (with Combat V), Bronze Star Medal, and Air Medal (5 individual, 4 strike/flight awards) as representative of those teams.
Buss became Naval Aviation’s 6th "Air Boss" in October 2012.