The Commander gets the glory, but they are also responsible for the overall safety, organization and management of the mission. This means that they need to be in charge from the inception of the mission, by working on the planning and development of the crew’s goals and how to accomplish them.
They are responsible for the crew’s logistics before, during and after the mission, although sometimes they turn some of those responsibilities over to the XO. The commander is the person held accountable for all things related to the mission, and is in command of all things while at MDRS, although they still need to respect the overall authority of MDRS staff and the HSO in health and safety matters.
Commanders preferably will have prior successful MDRS experience, but can also have gained their leadership skills in their own field and/or via school and field experience. Commanders must have demonstrated leadership and experience in remote or challenging field areas.