Rear Adm. (ret) Rick Ruehe, a native of Hampton, Va., was commissioned on June 8, 1973 through the NROTC program at the University of Illinois. His first assignment was aboard USS Henry B. Wilson (DDG 7), homeported in San Diego, where he served as the ship's Damage Control Assistant.
In December 1974, he was ordered to flight training and was designated a Naval Aviator on January 23, 1976. His first aviation assignment was in San Diego with Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 33, deploying with aviation detachments aboard USS Sterett (CG 29) and USS Paul F. Foster (DD 964).
In 1979, he was assigned to the SH-2F Training Squadron, Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 31 as an instructor pilot. In 1982, he reported as Officer-in-Charge, Commander Anti-Submarine Warfare Wing Pacific Fleet LAMPS Detachment Cubi Point, Republic of the Philippines. His duties in this assignment included providing maintenance and supply support to helicopter detachments deployed to the western Pacific and Indian Oceans.
Returning to San Diego in 1984, he was assigned to Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 35 as Squadron Operations Officer and Detachment Officer-in-Charge. In 1986, he transferred to the Staff of the Director, Total Force Programming/Manpower (OP-12), Washington, D.C., where he served as an analyst.
In January 1989 he again returned to flying duties in San Diego, serving as Executive Officer and, in January 1990, as Commanding Officer of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 33
In 1991, he joined USS Tarawa (LHA 1), serving as Air Officer during two deployments to the Arabian Gulf and Indian Ocean. In 1993, he reported to Mayport, Fla., as Commanding Officer of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 40.
In 1995, he returned to shipboard duties with assignment to USS Belleau Wood (LHA 3), forward-deployed to Sasebo, Japan, as Executive Officer and, in 1996, as Commanding Officer.
In 1998, he joined the Staff of the Supreme Allied Commander, Atlantic (SACLANT) in Norfolk, Va., as Executive Assistant to the Chief of Staff. He detached from SACLANT in December 1999, to become the Commander, Navy Region Southwest.
In 2002, Rear Adm. Ruehe returned to Japan and assumed duties as the Commander, Amphibious Force 7th Fleet/Amphibious Group 1 and in September 2003, he assumed duties as Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Japan.
In his final assignment, Rear Adm. Ruehe assumed duties as Commander, Navy Region Mid-Atlantic in November of 2005.
Ruehe is a 1973 graduate of the University of Illinois. He also holds a Master of Science from the University of Southern California.
His personal awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit (4 awards), the Meritorious Service Medal (five awards) and the Navy Commendation Medal.