Secretary of Defense James Mattis announced several Navy nominations on Tuesday including the commanders of U.S. Fleet Forces, Naval Submarine Forces, and Fleet Cyber Command.
The administration nominated Vice Adm. Christopher Grady, commander of 6th Fleet, to be appointed full admiral and commander of U.S. Fleet Forces Command. If confirmed, Grady would replace Adm. Phil Davidson who recently led the Navy’s Comprehensive Review of systemic causes that led to the deadly USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62) and John S. McCain (DDG-56) collisions (Defense Daily, Nov. 2, 2017).
Davidson is rumored to be the administration’s nominee to lead U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM). Earlier this month, the current commander of PACOM, Adm. Harry Harris, was nominated to be the U.S. ambassador to Australia (Defense Daily, Feb. 9).
As head of 6th Fleet Grady also concurrently serves as deputy commander of U.S. Naval Forces Europe and deputy commander of U.S. Naval Forces Africa. He assumed these duties in Oct. 2016.
Grady previously served as director of Maritime Operations Center (N2/3/5/7), commander of U.S. Pacific Fleet, and commander of Carrier Strike Group 1 with the Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group.
Mattis also nominated deputy commander of U.S. Strategic Command (STRATCOM), Vice Adm. Charles Richard, to be reappointed vice admiral and assigned as commander of Naval Submarine Forces. He would replace Vice Adm. Joe Tofalo.
Richard previously served as the director of the Undersea Warfare Division (N97), where he was responsible for planning, programming, and budgeting for acquisition, operational readiness, and modernization in the submarine force. He has been at STRATCOM since September 2016.
As head of Submarine Forces, Richard would also be commander of Submarine Force U.S. Atlantic Fleet and Allied Submarine Command.
Rear Adm. Timothy White was nominated to be vice admiral and assigned as commander of Fleet Cyber Command, which includes commander of the U.S. 10th Fleet, all based at Fort Meade, Md. White currently serves as commander of the cyber National Mission Force at Cyber Command.
White previously served as deputy director of Tailored Access Operations (TAO) at the National Security Agency (NSA) and director for intelligence (J2) at U.S. Pacific Command.
Mattis named Rear Adm. Michal Moran for appointment to vice admiral and assignment as the principal military deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development, and acquisition (RDA). Moran currently serves as the program executive officer (PEO) for tactical aircraft programs since December 2015. He previously served as commander of the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division and assistant commander for Test and Evaluation at Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR).
Separately, Secretary of the Navy Richard Spencer and Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. John Richardson announced Rear Adm. Shane Gahagan will replace Moran as PEO for tactical aircraft programs. He currently serves as commander of the Naval Air Warfare Center, Aircraft Division.