Command Biographies
MALS-14 Commanding Officer
Lieutenant Colonel Michael P. Kusnerak

A native of Florida, Lieutenant Colonel Kusnerak enlisted in the Marine Corps in June 1994, and attended boot camp at MCRD Parris Island, South Carolina.  After completion of Marine Combat Training at Camp Geiger, NC and the Basic Helicopter Course at NAS Millington, TN, Private First Class Kusnerak reported for training at MCAS Tustin, CA, for instruction in CH-46 Flightline Mechanics.  In June of 1995, after obtaining the 6112 MOS, CH-46 Flight-Line Mechanic, Lance Corporal Kusnerak reported for duty to HMM-162, MCAS New River.  While assigned to HMM-162, Lance Corporal Kusnerak deployed twice to the Mediterranean Sea, supporting operations in Liberia and Sierra Leone.  During this time, Lance Corporal Kusnerak was promoted to the ranks of Corporal and Sergeant, and was made the NCOIC of Maintenance Control, where he stayed until leaving the Golden Eagles, earning Safe for Flight Certification on CH-46E, CH-53E, AH-1W, UH-1N, and AV-8B aircraft.  In October of 1999, Sergeant Kusnerak re-enlisted and was ordered to serve as a Primary MOS Instructor at the CH-46 FREST onboard MCAS New River, and promoted to the rank of Staff Sergeant in April of 2001.  During the three and a half years Staff Sergeant Kusnerak was an instructor, he graduated nine classes and over 70 Marines and Sailors into the 6112 MOS.    In April of 2003, Staff Sergeant Kusnerak was selected for commissioning via the Enlisted Commissioning Program and ordered to attend the 183rd Officer Candidates Class at MCB Quantico, VA.  Upon completion of OCS, Staff Sergeant Kusnerak was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in August of 2003.  After completion of The Basic School and Aircraft Maintenance Officer School, Second Lieutenant Kusnerak reported for duty with MALS-14, onboard MCAS Cherry Point, NC.  Second Lieutenant Kusnerak was then assigned to VMAQ-3 as the Maintenance Material Control Officer.  In July of 2004, Second Lieutenant Kusnerak reported to VMA-231, MAG-14 as the Assistant Maintenance Officer.  During this time, Second Lieutenant Kusnerak deployed to the Mediterranean a third time with HMM-162 and the 26th MEU as the Fixed-Wing MMCO, and was promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant.  Upon return from that deployment, First Lieutenant Kusnerak served as both the Assistant Maintenance Officer and MMCO for VMA-231.  In October 2006, First Lieutenant Kusnerak was reassigned as the Quality Assurance Officer for the “Spades” and deployed in March of 2007, to Al Asad Airbase, Iraq.     After returning from Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08.1 in September of 2007, First Lieutenant Kusnerak reported for duty to MALS-26, MAG-26, MCAS New River and was assigned as the Airframes Division Officer.  Upon promotion to Captain in June, 2008, Captain Kusnerak was re-assigned as the Quality Assurance Officer for MALS-26.    In October, 2008, Captain Kusnerak was selected to serve as Aide-de-Camp to the Commanding General of 2d MAW.  After thirteen months as Aide to MajGen Flock, Captain Kusnerak returned to the “Patriots” and served as the Assistant Aircraft Maintenance Officer for the then only V-22 MALS in the Marine Corps.  Upon leaving the Patriots in August 2011, Captain Kusnerak attended resident PME in Quantico, VA., and after graduation in May 2012, Captain Kusnerak reported to NAVAIR 6.7 to serve as the Maintenance Lead and Deputy Program Manager for the MALSP II Program.  After being promoted to Major in March, 2014, he took over as the Program Manager for the Marine Aviation Logistics- Enterprise Information Technology (MAL-EIT) Program in June, 2015.  While serving as the MAL-EIT Program Manager, Major Kusnerak was responsible the development, delivery, and sustainment of three IT systems that modernize and standardize the way the Marine Corps supports and sustains deployed aviation forces.

In July of 2016, Major Kusnerak was ordered back to MCAS New River where he served as the Operations Officer, Aircraft Maintenance Officer, and Executive Officer for MALS-29.

In June of 2019, Major Kusnerak checked into the Pentagon and joined the OPNAV N98 staff to serve as the Aviation Depot Maintenance Resource Officer in N980L. 

Promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in January, 2020, he was ordered back to MCAS Cherry Point to serve with the “Dragons” of MALS-14.  He will assume command on June 18th, 2020.

Lieutenant Colonel Kusnerak is a graduate of the Expeditionary Warfare School and the blended Command & Staff College.  He holds a Bachelor’s in Business Administration from Campbell University and a Master’s of Science in Contract Management from Naval Postgraduate School.
Lieutenant Colonel Kusnerak’s personal decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal with gold star, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with two gold stars, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with three gold stars and the Good Conduct Medal with 2 bronze stars.

Marine Aircraft Group 14