Commander Shirk is currently assigned as District Chaplain, 1st Coast Guard District, Boston, MA. He was born October 6, 1963 in Topeka, KS. He has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Maryland (Asian Division), a Master of Divinity from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Kansas City, MO and a Master of Arts in Child Development and Family Relations from East Carolina University, Greenville, NC. Commander Shirk is ordained by the Baptist General Conference.
He first enlisted in the Navy in June 1982 as a Cryptological Technician (Collection) CTR and served until June 1988. While enlisted his duty stations consisted of: Naval Security Group Activity (NSGA), Fort Meade, MD and NSGA Misawa Air Base Japan.
Commander Shirk was commissioned in the Navy in June 1992. After completing Chaplain School in New Port, RI he was assigned to Destroyer Squadron-Nine, Long Beach, CA (1992-1994), Long Beach Naval Station (1994), Marine Aircraft Control Group-28, Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Cherry Pont, NC (1994-1996), Naval Hospital, MCAS Cherry Point, NC (1996-2000), 9th Communication Battalion, Camp Pendleton, CA (2000-2002), Naval Security Group Activity, Fort Meade, MD (2002-2006), Marine Corps Base (MCB), Camp Lejeune, NC (2006-2009), 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, MCAS Cherry Point, NC (2009-2011), Field Medical Training Battalion, Camp Johnson, NC (2011-2014) and MCAS Cherry Point (2014-2017). While at MCB Camp Lejeune Commander Shirk was sent as an Individual Augmentation with 82nd Airborne Division to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
Commander Shirk’s personal decorations include: Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Forces Commendation Medal, Navy Commendation Medal (3 gold stars) and Navy Achievement Medal.