Lt. Col. Edward J. Danielson enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1987 and served on active duty as an aviation structural mechanic until 1991. In 1991, Danielson transferred to the U.S. Navy reserves and enrolled in college at Florida State University. He graduated FSU with a Bachelor of Science degree (Political Science) in 1994 and a Law Degree in 1996. In 1997, after completing Officer Candidates School, Danielson was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps, and in 1998, after completing The Basic School and Naval Justice School, he was designated a judge advocate.
Danielson’s first assignment was to the 1st Force Service Support Group (now 1st Marine Logistics Group) at Camp Pendleton, Calif. There, he served as a defense counsel (1998-99), deputy staff judge advocate and operational law officer (2000), and trial counsel (2001). During this assignment, he deployed to Kenya as the deputy SJA for 1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade as part of Exercise Natural Fire/Native Fury 2000.
In 2002, Danielson was assigned as a congressional fellow in the office of U.S. Senator Jack Reed, D-R.I. After completing his fellowship, he was assigned to the Office of Legislative Affairs, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps, and served as a legislative affairs officer (2003) and deputy director, U.S. Senate Liaison Office (2003-2005). In these assignments, he traveled to over 20 countries, including throughout Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. During this time, he deployed to Bagram and Kabul, Afghanistan, as an individual augment with duties as an investigator for the Secretary of Defense’s inquiry into detainee interrogation techniques during Operation Enduring Freedom (2004); and later deployed to Al Anbar Province, Iraq, as an IA with 2nd Marine Division with duties as the operational law officer and operations center watch officer (2005).
In 2005, Danielson was assigned to 3rd Marine Logistics Group at Camp Foster, Okinawa, Japan. There, he served as the military justice officer/chief prosecutor/legal services support section assistant officer in charge.
In 2006, Danielson attended Marine Corps Command & Staff College in Quantico, Va., and earned a masters degree in Military Studies upon graduation in 2007.
Following graduation, Danielson was assigned to the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit at Camp Pendleton. There, he served as the staff judge advocate (2007-2009) and completed a Western Pacific deployment including exercises ashore in Jordan and Kuwait. During this assignment, he also deployed as an IA to Al Anbar Province, Iraq, with Regimental Combat Team-8 as the senior judge advocate (2009).
In 2009, Danielson attended Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C., and earned a Masters of Law degree in International & National Security Law upon graduation in 2010.
Following graduation, he was assigned to Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps, and served as the branch head for the International & Operational Law Branch, Judge Advocate Division (2010-2012). During this assignment, he was detailed for seven months to the Independent Panel Review of Judge Advocate Requirements in the Department of the Navy established by the Secretary of Defense.
He was previously assigned to the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, Headquarters, U.S. Special Operations Command, as the chief of operational law and strategy (2012-2014).
Danielson assumed command of 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C., in July 2014.