|Place of Origin||Lagos, Nigeria, Earth|
|Date of Birth||2334|
Commander, Fourth Fleet Expeditionary Group
Commodore Uzoma Ekwueme is the current commander of the Fourth Fleet Expeditionary Group. A veteran explorer and starship captain, Ekwueme spent the past nineteen years in command of the starship Europa before being elevated to his current role, overseeing the Fourth Fleet's rapid response units and other vessels not assigned to a task force.
Personal and Starfleet History
After joining Starfleet in 2352, Uzoma Ekwueme has had a distinguished half-century career, having cut his teeth as a bridge officer before spending almost thirty years in the command division. The markers of Ekwueme's service are leadership, duty, and humility.
Early Life (2334-2352)
Ekwueme was born in Lagos, Nigeria at a time when the Federation was at relative peace with its neighbors. His parents and grandparents had all served in Starfleet, so throughout his childhood Ekwueme saw joining the service not just as what he was born to do but also as the most important, most meaningful contribution he could make to society. Naturally athletic and popular, Ekwueme also applied himself to his studies from an early age, with the goal of not merely following in his parents' and grandparents' footsteps by entering the academy but exceeding them by earning the command of his own starship, something that no one in his family had yet accomplished.
Starfleet Academy (2352-2356)
After successful completion of the initial exam and the Starfleet Academy Preparatory Program, Ekwueme entered Starfleet Academy in 2352. With the goal of entering the command branch as soon as possible, he selected dual majors in both Philosophy and Astrophysics. As one of the classic degree combinations for command-bound officers, it allowed Ekwueme to immerse himself not only in the technical, scientific aspects of exploration but also in the cultural, historical, and ethical implications of Starfleet service.
During aptitude tests, Ekwueme demonstrated proficiency as a pilot, learning the ropes of starship navigation first behind the controls of Type-5 shuttles and then at the helm of the USS Republic on training cruises. In his previous schooling, Ekwueme was used to being at the top of the pack, but at the Academy he had to get used to being merely above-average. While he was considered a solid student, he finished his education at the academy solidly in the center of the top quartile.
Early Starfleet Career (2356-2370)
Thanks to an academy record that was perfectly respectable but not perhaps amazing, Ekwueme spent the first part of his career as a relief and night shift bridge officer, before eventually working his way up to more important assignments on larger and more modern starships.
USS Hephaestion (2356-2360)
Ekwueme's first assignment as an Ensign after Starfleet Academy was to the USS Hephaestion, an Excelsior-class heavy cruiser. He served both as a shuttle pilot and as a relief flight control officer. Though an older vessel, Ekwueme was able to gain valuable first-hand experience in starship operations while learning from an experienced, tight-knit crew. After two years, he successfully applied to become the Gamma Shift Operations Officer, earning a promotion to Lieutenant Junior Grade.
It was towards the end of this assignment that Ekwueme had his first taste of combat, when the Hephaestion was assigned to guard supply lines near the Cardassian border. At one point, the ship was ambushed with the lure of a false distress call. When the Alpha shift operations manager was severely injured, Ekwueme took that station and helped the command crew hold the ship together long enough to retreat. Ever since this experience, Ekwueme has seen combat as one of Starfleet's unfortunate burdens, something to be avoided at all costs.
USS Kansas City (2360-2364)
Thanks to his performance during a crisis on the Hephaestion, Ekwueme was promoted to Lieutenant. With his previous ship in spacedock for extensive repairs, he was posted to the smaller but more modern USS Kansas City, a New Orleans-class frigate fresh out of the yard. Now a department head, Ekwueme found himself with substantially more responsibility than he ever had before, but also one step closer to his goal: command. The Kansas City was sent directly to the front lines of the Cardassian conflict, which seemed to vary by the day between a diplomatic brushfire and full-blown war, depending on the vagaries of Cardassian motivations. Operating in tandem with another ship of the same class, the Kansas City served as a fast-strike ship to disrupt and harass formations of slower, less-advanced Cardassian warships. Coordinating logistics for a starship in a warzone was a real challenge for Ekwueme, but he was commended on several occasions for efficiency.
USS Lexington (2364-2370)
After four years aboard the Kansas City, Ekwueme was promoted to Lieutenant Commander and joined the first crew of the starship Lexington, a Nebula-class heavy cruiser. Thanks to his experience with New Orleans-class operations (as the majority of the systems on the Nebula class were first tested on the New Orleans class), he was considered a perfect candidate to become Chief Operations Officer and Second Officer, which meant that he would accompany all away missions in addition to his normal bridge duties. Unlike the Kansas City, the Lexington was assigned to astronautical surveys in the Alpha Quadrant, using an advanced sensor pod to map subspace in minute detail to make navigation for other starships easier. Exploration was what Ekwueme had always wanted to do with his career, so he was thankful to be away from the Cardassian conflict.
His longest assignment to date, Ekwueme served aboard the Lexington for six years, during which time the ship was considered a very prestigious posting for new academy graduates, thanks to her reputation for excellence, which was due in no small part to Ekwueme's exemplary service.
First Officer (2370-2375)
By 2370, Ekwueme had become an obvious candidate for first officer roles across the fleet. He served as second seat for all of the 2370s, first aboard the Challenger and then aboard the Lafayette as these two large explorers navigated through one of the Federation's most turbulent decades.
USS Challenger (2370-2375)
Ekwueme was offered several postings upon his promotion to commander, but he elected to become the first officer aboard the last of the original six Galaxy-class starships to be completed, the Challenger, rather than accepting command of a surveyor or other lesser ship. Within weeks of joining this new posting, one of the Challenger's sister ships, the Venture was destroyed during first contact with the Dominion. This sent an emotional blast wave through the crew of the Challenger as well, who had thought that a ship like theirs was one of the most powerful in the galaxy. War was coming, and over the next three years the Challenger's crew prepared for their inevitable shift from exploration to combat.
When the Dominion War finally erupted in 2373, the Challenger was assigned as the flagship of the Third Fleet, participating in many significant battles, as well as diplomatic and humanitarian missions. Indeed, the ship was present during Operation Return and the Battle of Cardassia. Ekwueme distinguished himself on many occasions for leading away teams responsible for defending or liberating vulnerable Starfleet and allied positions. For his service during the war, Ekwueme earned the Legion of Merit.
USS Lafayette (2375-2380)
Following the war, the Challenger was laid up for a major refit. As before, Ekwueme was offered a number of minor commands, but he elected to follow his captain to the Lafayette, a new Sovereign-class explorer. Though much more combat-capable than the Challenger, the Lafayette was used primarily as an exploratory platform during Ekwueme's time aboard her, remaining vigilant during the second half of a turbulent decade but once again returning to Starfleet's core ideals of exploration and diplomacy.
Finally in 2380, the moment that Ekwueme was waiting for had arrived: he was offered command of a heavy cruiser. He would spend the next nineteen years on her bridge, proving himself to be every measure the model of a Starfleet captain.
USS Europa (2380-2399)
With substantial service on large starships now under his belt, Ekwueme was offered a promotion to Captain and the command of the starship Europa in 2380. As one of the new Luna-class heavy cruisers, this vessel was given a five-year exploratory assignment in the Gamma Quadrant. It was at this point that Ekwueme felt his training, experience, and ambitions all come together. As with most captains, there were teething problems as he became accustomed to giving the orders and not just carrying out the orders of others, he developed a reputation as a philosopher-captain, someone interested in not only discovering the unknown but understanding it.
During his five-year mission, Ekwueme oversaw eleven first contact missions, nineteen second contact missions, and the negotiation of multiple trade relationships with independent Gamma Quadrant powers. The Europa's return to earth was mere days after the disastrous synth-orchestrated terrorist attack on Mars, which resulted in the destruction of Utopia Planitia. While Ekwueme had hoped to be sent back out on another long-distance mission, the Europa was instead assigned to diplomatic and patrol duties on the Federation's borders, as Starfleet began to withdraw from the wider galaxy in response to the attack.
Following the destruction of Romulus in 2387, Ekwueme did persuade Starfleet Command to send him and his ship on a five-year mission in the Beta Quadrant, nominally to contact species past Romulan space, but more importantly to gather intelligence on the far reaches of the Star Empire while it was chaotic and vulnerable. While the ship had a few minor run-ins with Romulan commanders, Ekwueme was credited with an additional seven first contacts during this mission, as well as laying the groundwork for future exploratory missions.
In the 2390s, the Europa conducted numerous limited-duration exploratory missions just outside of the Federation's borders as Starfleet Command became more and more cautious about extending its reach too far.
Flag Officer (2399-Present)
While Ekwueme had initially been offered a flag officer's billet following his first five year mission, he turned it down, just like he would turn down other such offers over the next fourteen years. It wasn't until 2399 when Starfleet was ready to go back into extended exploratory missions that he was persuaded to accept promotion to Commodore.
Commander, Fourth Fleet Expeditionary Group
In June of 2399, Ekwueme was tapped for promotion to Commodore by Rear Admiral Aubrey Seagraves, Director of Fourth Fleet Operations. While there were four larger task forces being organized to handle humanitarian, long-range exploratory, defensive, and diplomatic operations, there was yet another group of starships that would be given the longest-duration missions, the most important tactical missions, and other tasks that just didn't fit under existing command structures: the Fourth Fleet Expeditionary Group. Thanks to his long career experiencing both Starfleet as an exploratory group and Starfleet as a defensive armada, Ekwume was placed in command of this group, where he exercises direct command over this very special group of Fourth Fleet ships.
Ekwueme is the epitome of gravitas, with the bearing of a man who has spend the better part of fifty years as a Starfleet officer. While not humorless, he doesn't like to waste time or mince words when it comes to delivering instructions to the captains who work under him. He is, however, deeply empathetic and interested in not only the success of the missions he assigns but in the success of those carrying them out.
|2352-2353||Astrophysics and Philosophy Student||Starfleet Academy||Cadet Fourth Class|
|2353-2354||Astrophysics and Philosophy Student||Starfleet Academy||Cadet Third Class|
|2354-2355||Astrophysics and Philosophy Student||Starfleet Academy||Cadet Second Class|
|2355-2356||Astrophysics and Philosophy Student||Starfleet Academy||Cadet First Class|
|2356-2358||Relief Flight Control Officer||USS Hephaestion||Ensign|
|2358-2360||Gamma Shift Operations Manager||USS Hephaestion||Lieutenant Junior Grade|
|2360-2364||Chief Operations Officer||USS Kansas City||Lieutenant|
|2364-2370||Chief Operations Officer & Second Officer||USS Lexington||Lieutenant Commander|
|2370-2375||Executive Officer||USS Challenger||Commander|
|2375-2380||Executive Officer||USS Lafayette||Commander|
|2380-2399||Commanding Officer||USS Europa||Captain|
|2399-Present||Commander, Fourth Fleet Expeditionary Group||Fourth Fleet Command||Commodore|
Commodore Ekwueme In-Play
- As a fleet-level NPC, Commodore Ekwueme is available for use in Bravo Fleet RPGs. He is intended to serve as the source of orders for the ships of the Fourth Fleet Expeditionary Group, which is the in-character assignment of all BF ship-based RPGs. This way, RPGs don't need to use a random flag officer or wait on operations staff to write joint posts to get the ball rolling on missions.
- GMs are free to use the commodore as they see fit, as long as they do not alter his personality significantly or kill/injure/maim him.
- The service record for Commodore Ekwueme was developed by considering where Will Riker might be now had he not left the service in the 2380s. He is an experience starship commander who has spent a lot of time on prestigious assignments.
- Neither too strict nor a fan of wild deviations from Starfleet regulations, Ekwueme is supportive of the officers who work under him and understands the demands command places upon individuals.