LtCol Penton is from Baton Rouge, Louisiana and graduated from Louisiana State University. Upon graduation he attended OCS in January 2002 and was commissioned as a 2ndLt. He reported to Naval Air Station Pensacola for flight training and was winged as a Naval Flight Officer in November 2004. LtCol Penton then reported to VMFAT-101 at MCAS Miramar for initial training as an F/A-18D WSO.
In November 2005, LtCol Penton reported to VMFA(AW)-242. He deployed to combat in Al-Asad, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 05-07 from August 2006 to March 2007. During this tour he served as the NATOPS Officer and S-1 Division Officer. In February 2008, LtCol Penton reported to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan with VMFA(AW)-242’s move to Marine Aircraft Group 12. While with the Bats in Japan, LtCol Penton was the S-4/Embarkation Officer and deployed in support of various exercises throughout the Western Pacific.
Following his tour in Japan, LtCol Penton reported for duty as an FRS instructor at VMFAT-101 in April 2009. During this tour, LtCol Penton served as the Squadron Adjutant, Air-to-Air Phase Head and D-Shop Phase-Head. He was a standardization instructor in every phase of training and was selected as Instructor WSO of the year in 2009 and 2010.
In April 2012 LtCol Penton was sent to NAS Pensacola to MATSG-21. While there he was selected to build the new Uniform Military Flight Officer Training Syllabus. He was the Plans and Production Department Head, Student Control Officer, and VT-86 Senior Marine during this tour.
In May 2015 LtCol Penton received orders to MAG-11 at MCAS Miramar and served on the Group Staff as the Assistant Operations Officer and then as OPSO and Airborne Mission Commander for the MAGTF Demo at the Miramar Airshow. Following his tour at the MAG, he checked in to the world famous Vikings of VMFA(AW)-225. He deployed again to MCAS Iwakuni Japan as part of the Unit Deployment Program from September 2016 to March 2017. On this tour he served as the Quality Assurance Officer and then Operations Officer, serving in the department head billet for 18 months.
LtCol Penton reported to MCICOM at the Pentagon in July 2018. He served as the Director of Operations and Plans for the Marine Corps National Capital Region Command and Director of the MCICOM Emergency Operations Center. While there he was the lead service planner for multiple National Special Security Events including the funeral for former President George H.W. Bush and the 59th Presidential Inauguration.
Upon completion of his Pentagon tour, LtCol Penton reported to Commander Naval Air Forces at NAS North Island as the USMC/USN TacAir Integration officer. He assumed his current duties as VMFAT-101 Executive Officer in February 2022.
LtCol Penton has logged over 2000 mishap-free flight hours. He is qualified in the F/A-18 as an ACTI, NSI, FAC(A), and NATOPS evaluator. He is a CRM-I and was the CRM Program Manager for the F/A-18D. His personal awards include the Air Medal/Strike Flight Award with numeral “6”, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Commendation Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal (2), and Navy Achievement Medal. He has an MBA from the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business.