Mickey Strand, Navy Photographers Mate Chief Petty Officer retired, is a working Photographer & instructor living in San Diego, Ca. He is enjoying his second career after 24 years of active service, traveling and shooting with occasional teaching stops for ACME educational, Maine Media Workshops, and Madeline Island School of the Arts.
Mickey’s photography career began 40 years ago in a makeshift basement dark room in his parents home in Racine WI. His father instilled the love for the craft into him at a young age and it continues to grow to this day. During high school, his education began with photography classes and yearbook & newspaper staff.
Mickey enlisted in the Navy in 1985 at a Milwaukee Brewers baseball game with an all-Wisconsin recruit company. After boot camp he reported to his first duty assignment on the USS Ranger (CV 61) where he served as a ship’s photographer. He continued to work his way up the ranks and improve his trade at shore and sea stations around the Pacific. Mickey served independent duty as the last Navy PH assigned to the USS Long Beach.
In 1997 he was selected to join a small team of instructors tasked to create the first Digital Multimedia Course at the Defense Information School (DINFOS), in Fort Meade, MD. The team developed a collegiate certified Digital Multimedia Course, where students display the principles, techniques, and skills required to create photography, graphics, sound, animation, video, and multimedia applications.
In 2001 he reported to Fleet Imaging Command Pacific Training Department in San Diego, CA where he was selected for promotion to Chief Petty Officer. He quickly deployed in response to 9/11 with Combat Camera capturing wartime imagery. All the while he continued to combine his passion for teaching with his passion for photography. His work educating young sailors throughout the Pacific Fleet lead to his selection as the 2006 “Earl Seaver” Memorial Award recipient.
In 2005 Mickey was selected to server as the Leading Chief at Combat Camera Group Pacific. His unit of photographers were the highest decorated unit having been deployed to 15 recurring operational areas in 4 separate theaters of operation. During this time and with his leadership the unit made tremendous changes to operations, equipment, and training that facilitated the embedding of combat photographers with special operations units around the globe.
In 2009 Mickey retired now enjoying working as an artist, instructor and a continuing student of our craft.
Images: ©Mickey Strand