LtCol Sanders earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Purdue University in 2000. He was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in August 2001 through the OCC program and immediately checked in to Fox Company at The Basic School. He reported to Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, CA for training as an Air Support Control Officer.
LtCol Sanders joined MASS-3 in 2002 and deployed with the Direct Air Support Center (DASC) supporting the 1st Marine Division's Forward Combat Operations Center during Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) I in 2003. Upon return, LtCol Sanders served as a Communications Platoon Commander before being designated as the Air Support Element (ASE) Officer-in-Charge for the 13th MEU. As part of the MEU's deployment from 2005-2006, the ASE supported OIF by participating in combat operations throughout Al Anbar Province, Iraq. In 2006, LtCol Sanders assumed the duties of Operations Officer for MASS-3.
In July 2006, LtCol Sanders reported aboard MCAS Miramar for Inspector/Instructor duty with MASS-6 (Det A). Serving as the Active Duty Officer-in-Charge, he oversaw the successful mobilization and deployment of a contingent of reserve Marines to the Horn of Africa. During this tour that LtCol Sanders was selected for the Foreign Area Officer (FAO) program. He reported to the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA in June 2008 where his studies focused on the geopolitics of the African continent. Upon the conclusion of his graduate studies, he completed the Basic French Course at the Defense Language Institute. LtCol Sanders completed his 12-month FAO immersion training program based out of Dakar, Senegal supporting Marine Forces Africa security cooperation initiatives throughout the region.
LtCol Sanders returned to MASS-3 and was selected to attend the MAWTS-1 Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course in the fall of 2011. Subsequently, he assumed command of Bravo Company and deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) 12.1 where he directed all DASC operations within Regional Command Southwest. Upon completion of the deployment LtCol Sanders became the Squadron's Operations Officer and Executive Officer.
LtCol Sanders then served as the Africa & France Issues Officer within the International Affairs Branch of Headquarters Marine Corps where he developed policy, managed programs, and provided information to the Commandant of the Marine Corps and other executive leaders regarding political-military affairs and regional perspectives. LtCol Sanders was then selected to attend Brazil's Naval Command and Staff College, located in Rio de Janeiro, during the 2018 academic year. Upon graduation, Lieutenant Colonel Sanders reported to Marine Air Control Group 18 in Okinawa, Japan for further assignment as the Commanding Officer of MASS-2.