Lieutenant Colonel Richard P. Neikirk is from New Wilmington, Pennsylvania. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps in 2003 after graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina.
Lieutenant Colonel Neikirk has served as an artilleryman in both 10th and 11th Marine Regiments. In 2004, Neikirk deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom with 2d Battalion, 11th Marines and served as a provisional infantry platoon commander. In 2005 he deployed with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit as the Battery Fire Direction Officer. During this deployment, he participated in Humanitarian Assistance / Disaster Relief efforts on Leyte island in the Republic of the Philippines. In 2006, Neikirk was assigned as the Battery Executive Officer. In 2011, Neikirk deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom as a Battery Commander for 2d Battalion, 10th Marines. His battery was employed as provisional infantry during this deployment. In 2012, Neikirk was assigned as the Operations Officer for 2d Battalion, 10th Marines.
From 2007 to 2010, Neikirk was assigned to Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island. He initially served as a Series Commander in 3rd Battalion before transferring to Support Battalion where he served as both a Company Commander and battalion Operations Officer. In 2010 Neikirk attended the Expeditionary Warfare School in Quantico, Virginia. In 2013, he was selected as the Staff Secretary for the 2d Marine Division and served in the Commanding General’s office. In 2014, he was assigned to the College of Naval Command and Staff in Newport, Rhode Island. From 2015-2018 he commanded, Marine Corps Recruiting Station Raleigh, North Carolina.
In June 2018, he was assigned to Special Operations Command, Pacific where he served as a deliberate planner before serving as Director of the Commander’s Action Group. In June 2020, Neikirk assumed command of 1st Battalion, 12th Marines.
Lieutenant Colonel Neikirk’s professional military education consists of The Basic School, Field Artillery Officer Basic Course, Expeditionary Warfare School, College of Naval Command and Staff, and Joint Professional Military Education Phase I and II.