Hammer, CAPT Paul

Director, Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health & Traumatic Brain Injury


Capt. Paul Hammer is a board certified psychiatrist and currently serves as the director of the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE).

Capt. Hammer received his Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from the University of San Francisco and his medical doctorate from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS). He completed a psychiatry internship at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland and his psychiatry residency at Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD).

Prior to DCoE, Capt. Hammer served as director of the Naval Center for Combat and Operational Stress Control at the Naval Medical Center (NCCOSC), San Diego, California. The mission of NCCOSC is to improve the psychological health of Navy and Marine Corps forces through programs that aid research, educate service members, build resilience and promote best practices in the treatment of post traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury. Capt. Hammer has personally trained thousands of service members in operational stress control, psychological health and traumatic brain injury topics.

Capt. Hammer deployed to Iraq twice, spending a total of 18 months in the combat theater. He provided direct care to warriors in the combat environment, treating Marines and sailors suffering from acute combat stress reactions and directed mental healthcareactivities of over two dozen caregivers for 33,000 service members. Capt. Hammer has led interventions following suicides, training accidents and natural and man-made disasters. He led the psychiatric intervention at the Korean Air Lines Crash in Guam in 1997 and the Joint Task Force Mental Health interventions following Hurricane Mitch. This past year he was deployed in support of the Joint Task Force in Haiti.

Capt. Hammer’s awards include the Meritorious Service Medal (three Awards), Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy-Marine Corps Commendation Medal (two awards), Joint Service Achievement medal, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, and Expert Rifle and Pistol ribbons.