Photo Credit: Courtney D Photography

Lieutenant Colonel Hunter Ripley “Rip” Rawlings IV was a Marine Corps infantry and Reconnaissance Officer with 22-years of service. With ten combat and peace keeping deployments including Iraq (OIF), Afghanistan (OEF), CJTF-HOA (OEF) Djibouti and a specialty military reconnaissance advisor to Saudi Arabian forces.

Lieutenant Colonel Rawlings last assignment was at the Marine Corps University’s Command and Staff College as the Department Head for Warfighting.

Prior to this appointment, he served as Battalion Commander, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, the Marine Corps’ storied “Darkhorse” battalion.


Lieutenant Colonel Rawlings has served in a variety of staff and command positions within the Marine Corps and across the Joint services over the last twenty-two years of service to the Nation.

From 2012 to 2014 he served as a Strategic Plans officer to DC, PP&O, Strategic Plans (PLN) division at HQMC in the Pentagon. Here he held portfolio’s for PACOM including the Pacific numbered war plans, was the Marine Corps’ Nuclear officer, the PLN QDR officer, and wrote and staffed the ‘Forces For’ and the Marine Corps Service Campaign Plan.

Prior to serving as Strategic Plans Officer, LtCol Rawlings attended USMC premiere School of Advanced Warfare (SAW) from 2011-2012 and Command & Staff (CDET) in 2010 graduating in the top f the class as a Distinguished Graduate.

From 2008 to 2010, LtCol Rawlings was the Future Operations Officer for the Counter-IED Operations Intelligence Center (COIC) and deployed as the COIC-A OIC in Afghanistan in 2009.

Prior to this, LtCol Rawlings was the Operations Officer and Executive Officer (Interim) for 3d Light Armored Reconnaissance (3d LAR) Battalion in 29-Palms from 2006-2008 deploying to OIF. Also at 3d LAR Bn, LtCol Rawlings Commanded Company D which deployed to OIF.

Before being assigned to 3d LAR, he attended the U.S. Army’s Armor Captain’s Career Course (ACCC) in 2005 where he was an Honor Graduate and the General George Marshall awardee. He attended and graduated from the U.S. Army’s specialized Cavalry Leader’s Course in 2005.

From 2002 to 2004 he was a Fleet Anti-terrorism Security Team (FAST) Platoon Commander at 2nd and 1st FAST with Marine Corps Security Force battalion, Norfolk Virginia.


Lieutenant Colonel Rawlings attended Virginia Military Institute ’89, then transferred. He Attended Albert Ludwigs Universitat, Freiburg, Germany then graduated from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in 1994 with​ undergraduate degrees in English Literature and German Literature and a minor in Studio Art. He holds a master’s degree in Operational Art from the USMC School of Advanced Warfighting. LtCol Rawlings is also a MIT Seminar XXI Fellow.


His ​awards and decorations include: Bronze Star Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster (2) Meritorious Service Medal with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster (2), Navy Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (2), Combat Action Ribbon Joint, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (2), Afghanistan Campaign Medal (2), Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon (8), Overseas Service Ribbon, NATO – ISAF Medal, Rifle Expert Badge (6), Pistol Expert Badge (8).

LtCol Rawlings demonstrated proficiency to mastery with all Marine Corps infantry weapons, from anti-tank rockets to heavy machine guns, and has been awarded the Marine Corps’ highest standard marksmanship badges for marksmanship: the Expert Rifle Badge five times and Expert Pistol Badge eight times. Rawlings competed for, and won the German Army (Bundeswehr), Gold Schützenschnur, the weapons proficiency badge in Gold (3rd Class), that Nation’s highest marksmanship award. LtCol Rawlings is a licensed Light Armored vehicle driver.


LtCol Rawlings is an avid hunter and outdoorsman, rock drummer, motorcyclist, SCUBA diver and a licensed small craft sailor.