Rear Admiral Ver Hage, a native of Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, enlisted in the Navy in 1984 and served as an electronics technician until his appointment to the Naval Academy. He graduated in 1991 with a Bachelor of Science degree in political science and later from the Naval War College in 2008 with a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies. A designated Surface Acquisition professional, Ver Hage has served in a variety of afloat and ashore assignments.
At sea, tours include duty in four ships and three afloat staffs. Ship assignments include as Commanding Officer of USS Carr (FFG 52), Executive Officer in USS San Jacinto (CG 56), Commissioning Operations Officer in USS Higgins (DDG 76), and as Strike Officer and Damage Control Assistant in USS Chancellorsville (CG 62). Afloat staff assignments include as Flag Aide to Commander Second Fleet/Striking Fleet Atlantic, as Exercise/Regional Engagement Officer in Manama, Bahrain-based Destroyer Squadron Five Zero, and as Officer in Charge of Tomahawk Afloat Planning System Pacific Team One embarked aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) with Commander, Cruiser-Destroyer Group Three.
Ashore, Ver Hage served in a number of acquisition and staff assignments most recently with the Missile Defense Agency as the Major Program Manager for Aegis Ashore. In this position he was responsible for the design, development, testing, Ballistic Missile Defense System integration, and fielding of the Aegis Ashore program capabilities. Prior to his Missile Defense Agency assignment, Ver Hage served as the U.S. National Point of Contact and Program Executive Officer, Integrated Warfare Systems (PEO IWS) Project Manager for U.S. participation in the Maritime Theater Missile Defense (MTMD) Forum. Ver Hage served for 33 months as Commanding Officer of Naval Surface Warfare Center, Corona Division and nearly four months as Commanding Officer of Naval Surface Warfare Center, Port Hueneme Division. Ver Hage also served as an Associate Fellow with the Chief of Naval Operations Strategic Studies Group XXVI and twice on the OPNAV Surface Warfare Directorate staff to include as a DDG-1000 Action Officer and more recently as the Weapons and Sensors Branch Head.
Ver Hage’s personal awards include the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal (six awards), the Navy Marine Corps Commendation Medal (six awards), the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal (three awards), and various unit and service medals and ribbons.