Commander, New York Naval Militia Southern Command
Captain Spiro C. Colaitis is from New York, NY, and graduated from Pratt Institute in 1983 with a degree in Electrical Engineering. He entered the Navy in 1984 and received his commission through Aviation Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, FL. He then earned his designation as a Naval Flight Officer and flew EA-6B Prowlers in Whidbey Island, WA off the USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) until 1988.
In 1989 Captain Colaitis transferred into the Civil Engineer Corps and used his engineering skills managing construction projects for the US Marine Corps in Camp Pendleton, CA until 1991.
In July1991, he was reassigned to the Naval Supply Center in Pearl Harbor, HI as the Staff Civil Engineer. He remained in Hawaii until 1994 when he decided to return to his home in New York, and affiliate into the Navy Reserves.
In his first assignment in 1995 as a Reserve Officer, Captain Colaitis was attached to Amphibious Construction Battalion Two, Little Creek, VA where he earned his second warfare qualification as a Seabee Combat Warfare Specialist. In 1998 he was transferred to a European Command Detachment in Newport, RI, where he participated in numerous NATO exercises throughout Europe.
After the terrorist attacks of September 11th Captain Colaitis was activated to active duty and served with the Operations Department at the First Naval Construction Division in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from February 2003 to August 2003. Captain Colaitis was returned to active duty for a second time from December 2003 to June 2004 when he was sent to the Philippines to help train the Philippine Navy in their battle with Al Quieda terrorist.
Captain Colaitis was returned to Active Duty for a third time in December 2007 to August 2008 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom when he was mobilized by the United States Marine Corps to serve on the Commanding General’s staff for the First Marine Expeditionary Force in Iraq. While in Iraq, he qualified for his third warfare pin as a Fleet Marine Force Officer. Captain Colaitis was returned to Active Duty for a fourth time, January – May 2010 when he was sent to the United States Southern Command to assist in the relief efforts when Haiti was devastated by an earth quake.
His reserve tours include Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Washington DC from 2001-2004, Operations Officer, Ninth Naval Construction Regiment, Dallas, TX from 2004 – 2005. Amphibious Construction Battalion One, San Diego, CA from 2005 – 2008. Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Washington DC from 2008-2011. Volunteer Training Unit, Navy Operational Support Center, New York City 2011 – 2014. Captain Colaitis retired from the US Navy in 2014 after 30 years of service.
A Professional Engineer with a Doctorate in Education, Captain Colaitis is a recipient of various personal and campaign awards including the Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (two awards), and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (three awards).
In his personal life Captain Colaitis and his wife Nia are the proud parents of Christos (15) and Nikki (13). In his professional life he is an Assistant Superintendent for District Operations for the Malverne Union Free School District.