A native of Carmel, California, Rear Adm. Rich “Snap” Brophy received his commission in 1991 from the United States Naval Academy. In 1992 he earned a Master of Science degree in Management from Troy State University and in 1994 was designated a Naval Aviator. He is a graduate of the United States Navy Fighter Weapons School (TOPGUN), and in 2010 the United States Naval War College where he earned a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies.
Brophy’s operational assignments include tours with Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 105, and Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 81 as both a Weapons and Tactics Officer and as a Department Head. He has completed deployments on USS Theodore Roosevelt, USS Enterprise, USS George Washington, USS John F. Kennedy, USS Ronald Reagan and USS John C. Stennis. He commanded Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 115 and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9.
His shore assignments include an instructor tour with Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 106; aide/flag lieutenant to the commander of the North American Aerospace Defense Command and United States Northern Command; Commander’s Action Group legislative branch for United States Northern Command; the executive assistant and Sea Strike branch head to OPNAV Analysis and Assessment Division (N81); deputy executive assistant and special assistant to the Vice Chief of Naval Operations; head, Carrier Strike Aircraft and Programs (N98); and executive assistant to OPNAV N3N5.
Brophy assumed command as commander, Naval Aviation Warfare Development Center in May 2019.
Brophy has logged over 3,900 flight hours, 100 combat missions and accumulated over 1000 carrier-arrested landings. He was a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Seminar XXI fellow, and the 2017 “Tailhooker of the Year” awarded by the Tailhook association. His decorations include the Legion of Merit (3 Awards), Bronze Star, Joint Meritorious Service Award, Meritorious Service Award, individual Air Medal with Combat “V”, five Strike/Flight Air Medals, and other personal, campaign and service ribbons.