|Rear Adm. John B. Nowell, Jr.
Rear Adm. Nowell is a native of Hickory, N.C. He is a distinguished graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in Ocean Engineering, and holds a Master of Science Degree in Weapons Systems Engineering from the Naval Postgraduate School.
His sea tours included duty on ships home ported in East and West coast ports as well as in Japan and Italy, and include USS Callaghan (DDG 994), USS Bunker Hill (CG 52), USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) and USS The Sullivans (DDG 68). Nowell commanded USS Porter (DDG 78) from April 2002 to December 2003. While under Nowell’s command, Porter surge deployed to U.S. 5th and 6th Fleets for Operation Iraqi Freedom where she conducted Tomahawk strikes and Theater Ballistic Missile Defense. During his tour, Porter earned all Mission Area Excellence Awards and was awarded the Battle Efficiency, Atlantic Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Bloodhound and the Golden Anchor Awards. While in command of Destroyer Squadron 60/Task Force 65 based in Naples, Italy from 2006 to 2008, he also served as the maritime force commander (Combined Task Force-Bravo) for Joint Task Force Lebanon; commander of Task Force West and Central Africa (CTF-365) and lead a multi-national force of ships, submarines, aircraft, expeditionary partnership teams and land-based forces conducting the inaugural Africa Partnership Station deployment.
Shore assignments included duty on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations in the Surface Warfare Directorate (N86) coordinating the Navy Theater Ballistic Missile Defense program, and as executive assistant to the Director of Theater Air Warfare (N865); chief of the Theater Air and Missile Defense Branch (J-38) in the Operations Directorate of the Joint Staff; and two tours at the Navy Personnel Command in Millington, Tenn., where he served as the head of the Washington Placement Branch (PERS-441); executive assistant to the Commander, Navy Personnel Command/Naval Personnel Development Command; and, director, Surface Warfare Distribution division (PERS-41). Nowell also served as director of the Navy Senate Liaison Office in Washington D.C. For his first Flag Officer tour, he served as Chief of Staff and Director, Strategy, Resources, and Plans (N5/8) on the staff of Naval Forces Europe and Africa/U.S. SIXTH Fleet in Naples, Italy. He started his current assignment in August 2015.
Personal awards include the Bronze Star, Legion of Merit (five awards), Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (two awards), and various other personal, unit and campaign awards. He was the recipient of the 1987 Pacific Fleet Junior Officer Shiphandling Award.