Department of Communications

Full-time lecturer promoted to lieutenant commander in U.S. Navy

Full-time lecturer promoted to lieutenant commander in U.S. Navy


Ken Hagihara, a full-time lecturer in the Department of Communications, was promoted this summer to the rank of lieutenantcommander in the U.S. Navy.

As a Navy public affairs officer (PAO) assigned to Navy Reserve Commander, U.S. Third Fleet Headquarters, one of Ken’s highest-profile responsibilities is to serve as the outreach officer for the annual Los Angeles Fleet Week event.

He also serves as a Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) action officer and Humanitarian Assistance/Disaster Response (HA/DR) officer responsible for providing rapid response as a Navyliaison to civil authorities when catastrophic disasters occur. As part of his HA/DR responsibilities, he spent three weeks in Hawaii this summer working side-by -side with the staff of the Japanese National Defense Forces training to respond to a catastrophic disaster in the Pacific arena. Ken has served in the active and reserve components of the United States military for nearly 24 years.

He served four years active duty as an enlisted member in the Air Force where he trained to become an electronic technician. After leaving the active duty, he served another 10 years as in the California Air National Guard where he was the non-commissioned officer in charge a tactical satellite communications workcenter in a combat communications squadron.After receiving his bachelor’s degree in communications from Cal State Fullerton and starting his own PR agency, he decided he wanted to become a Navy PAO. He applied to become a Navy PAO and was one of only 15 people selected out of over 1,000 applicants.

He received his commission in 2008 and is completing hisfirst decade of service as a naval officer.

At CSUF, Hagihara teaches courses in public relations, serves as the adviserto the student chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), and is one of the instructors of PRactical ADvantage Communications, the student PR and advertising agency.