Defense Service Office (DSO) West held a Change of Command ceremony aboard the Veterans Museum and Memorial Center in San Diego, Calif., on September 8, 2017. Rear Adm. John G. Hannink, Commander of Naval Legal Service Command and Deputy Judge Advocate General, presided over the ceremony in which Capt. Daniel Cimmino relieved Capt. Michael Bates as commanding officer of DSO West.
Hannink commented on the illustrious careers of both Bates and Cimmino and the successes of Defense Service Office West.
During the ceremony, Bates thanked his Sailors for a rewarding tour and acknowledged the support his family has provided throughout the years. "This has been the perfect cap on a long career. I appreciate the opportunity…it’s been a pretty great ride,” said Bates. Bates will retire from the Navy after 26 plus years of honorable and dedicated service. Cimmino just completed his tour at the Pentagon and served as Legislative Counsel in the Navy Office of Legislative Affairs. He also served as the Executive Assistant and Special Counsel to the General Counsel of the Department of the Navy.
"I am beyond honored and humbled to be a part of your Team and look forward to continuing the tradition of success forged at this command" said Cimmino.
Cimmino, a native of New Jersey, received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from William Paterson College in 1994. He was awarded his Juris Doctor Degree in May 1997 from Rutgers University School of Law-Newark. Captain Cimmino also possesses a Master of Laws Degree with a Certificate in National Security Studies from Georgetown University, a Master's of Science Degree in Management (Concentration in International Management) from Troy University, a Master of Arts Degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College and he has completed Joint Professional Military Education Phase I.
DSO West provides legal representation to military service members at Administrative Separation Boards, Boards of Inquiry and Courts-Martial, in addition to providing advice to service members on defense-related topics such as non-judicial punishment.