Lieutenant Colonel Clifton N. Rateike was raised in Indiana and graduated from Butler University in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He was commissioned as an officer in the United States Marine Corps in December 2006.
Second Lieutenant Rateike completed The Basic School in June 2007 and reported to MATSG-21 in Pensacola, FL for Flight School. First Lieutenant Rateike winged as a Naval Aviator and was selected as a CH-53E pilot in August 2010. Captain Rateike joined HMH-361 in May 2011 and deployed with HMM-364 (REIN) on the 15th MEU in 2012. He completed Weapons and Tactics Instructor (WTI) Course 2-14 and deployed with HMH-361 (REIN) to Okinawa, Japan in May 2014 as part of the Unit Deployment Program (UDP) 14.2. While at HMH-361, Capt Rateike served as the squadron S-4, NATOPS Officer, Current Operations Officer, Future Operations Officer, and Pilot Training Officer.
In 2015, Capt Rateike was selected on the Commandant’s Career-Level Education Board (CCLEB) and reported to the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS), where he earned a master’s degree in Manpower Systems Analysis. While at NPS, Major Rateike completed Expeditionary Warfare School (non-resident) and Naval War College (Monterey).
Maj Rateike was then assigned to Manpower and Reserve Affairs in Quantico, VA in 2017, where he served as both the Officer Plans Section Head and the Aviation Inventory Planner for the Manpower Plans and Policy Division.
Maj Rateike reported back to HMH-361 in June 2019, where he served as the Operations Officer for SLTE 2-20 and UDP 20.2 until June 2021. Maj Rateike reported to HQMC Aviation in July 2021 and served at the aide-de-camp to the Deputy Commandant for Aviation until July 2022 and then in the Cunningham Group.
In May 2023, LtCol Rateike reported to MATSG-21 in Pensacola, FL and assumed the role of Executive Officer.
His awards include the Meritorious Service Medal (2nd Award), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (2nd Award), and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.