North Central College - Naperville, IL

Stephen P. Taylor

Class Year: 

Outstanding Alumni Award Winner 2011

Colonel Stephen P. Taylor ’75 had a distinguished career in the U.S. Marine Corps, which reached a pinnacle in his service for President George W. Bush as a presidential helicopter pilot and commanding officer. He led more than 700 personnel in support of presidential and Marine Corps missions. He flew more than 150 presidential helicopter flights from 2001 to 2003. Steve previously served as presidential command pilot in 1985 and as officer in charge of several detachments that supported presidential travel.

In addition to his time in Washington, D.C., during his career Steve was deployed to the Mediterranean aboard the USS Guam, to Saudi Arabia for combat operations in Kuwait during Operation Desert Storm and to central Norway in support of Exercise Strong Resolve 95. In 1998, he was promoted to the rank of colonel and assigned to the chief of staff of Naval Operations as the head of the Amphibious Aviation Division.

After obtaining his political science degree from North Central, Steve attended U.S. Marine Corps Officer’s Candidate School and was commissioned a second lieutenant in 1975. He was designated a naval aviator in 1977. He attended Amphibious Warfare School in 1982 and the Naval War College in 1995, where he earned a master of arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies.

Steve retired from the Marine Corps in 2003 and joined Augusta Westland Inc., where he was involved in the program to replace the presidential helicopter fleet. In 2005, he accepted a position with Lockheed Martin and continued to work on the presidential helicopter program. Steve has also been active in establishing the Vertical Lift Consortium, a group of more than 90 companies working with the U. S. Department of Defense to advance the field of vertical lift aviation.

Steve and his wife Suzette currently reside in Lexington Park, MD.

Watch the video below to see how Steve’s experiences at North Central contributed to his success in the military and beyond.

See video