Colonel Atiim O. Phillips was born in Washington, D.C. and enlisted in the Virginia Army National Guard in 1994 as an infantryman (M60 gunner) while attending Virginia Tech. He graduated in 1998 with a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies. He continued to serve with the 1/116th, 29th INF DIV (L) in Christiansburg, VA until he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps in 1999. Upon graduating from The Basic School, he became a Communications Officer. He has served in all three Marine Expeditionary Forces (MEFs) and commanded operational communications units at every level.
Colonel Phillips’ Fleet Marine Force (FMF) assignments commenced in 2000 with 8th Communication Bn, II MEF where he served as Alpha Company’s Radio Platoon Commander, Bravo Company’s Executive and Operations Officer, and the lead communications planner for the Direct Support Company, planning the activation of 4th Marine Expeditionary Brigade (MEB) Anti-terrorism. In 2004, he deployed with 22D Marine Expeditionary Unit Special Operations Capable LF6F 1-04 as the Joint Task Force Enabler Detachment Officer-In-Charge in Tarin Kowt, Afghanistan in support of (ISO) Operation ENDURING FREEDOM (OEF) and established Forward Operation Base Ripley. As a Captain in 2008, he activated and served as the Commanding Officer, Charlie Company, Marine Wing Communications Squadron 38 (MWCS-38), 3d Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW), I MEF. He was frocked to Major and served as the Squadron’s Executive Officer. He deployed as the 3d MAW (FWD) Deputy Assistant Chief of Staff (AC/S) G-6 and G-6 Operations Officer at Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan ISO OEF 10.2. As a Lieutenant Colonel in 2016, he served as AC/S G-6, 3d MEB/ Task Force-76, III MEF in Okinawa, Japan, for two years. In 2021, he returned to MWCS-38 as the Commanding Officer during which he was selected for his current rank.
Colonel Phillips served multiple tours outside of the FMF. As a Captain in 2004, he was the Assistant Lead SIPRNET Engineer and Lead IP Demilitarized Zone Engineer at the Defense Information Systems Agency. As a Major in 2011, he was the Course Coordinator for the Basic and Advanced Instruction Groups, Communications School. Also, he was the Course Chief and Chief Instructor for the Advanced Communications Officer Course and supervised the Warrant Officer Communications Courses for three years; and supervised the Basic Communications Officer Course for one year. In 2015, he was a Communications, Cyber, and Command and Control Observer, Trainer, and Collector with MAGTF Staff Training Program Division for a year. As a Lieutenant Colonel in 2018, he was the Executive Officer of the Marine Corps Cyberspace Operations Group.
Colonel Phillips’ professional military education includes resident attendance at the Communications Information Systems Officer Course, Marine Corps Expeditionary Warfare School, Advanced Communications Officer Course, Marine Corps Command and Staff College, Army Cyber Operations Planner’s Course, and as a Commandant of the Marine Corps Senior Military Fellow with the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Colonel Phillips has a Masters of Science in Information Systems Management from the University of Phoenix in 2008 and a Masters of Science in Military Studies. He also has a Chief Information Officer Leadership Development Program graduate certificate from the National Defense University’s College of Information and Cyberspace.
Colonel Phillips has been married for 23 years and they have two children.