Adm. Walter F. Doran became the 30th commander in chief of the world's largest naval command May 4.
"We have complete confidence in your ability and we know that you and your commanders and your staff are up to the task," said Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Vern Clark, who was guest speaker during the brief ceremony aboard the historic battleship Missouri moored along Battleship Row here. "Our nation is at war. Adm. Doran, keep us ready, keep us strong, and bring us victory."
Doran, a native of Albany, N.Y., now leads a fleet responsible for more than half the Earth's surface and comprises more than 180 ships, 1,400 aircraft and 232,500 Sailors, Marines and civilians.
He took over from Adm. Thomas B. Fargo, who relinquished command of the Pacific Fleet to become commander in chief of the U.S. Pacific Command, headquartered at Camp H.M. Smith in Halawa Heights, with responsibility for all U.S. military forces in the Pacific.
Fargo, who had led the Fleet since Oct. 8, 1999, said his best experience was flying to USS Carl Vinson
(CVN 70) in January as it approached Pearl Harbor on its way home from supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in the North Arabian Sea.
Every American should witness the "clarity of mission, sense of purpose and accomplishment, and enthusiasm and energy" of the more than 3,000 Sailors he addressed on that ship, Fargo said.
Doran, 56, is no stranger to Asia and the Pacific. His first assignment was aboard USS Pritchett (DD-561) homeported in San Diego. Since then, his command tours have included U.S. Seventh Fleet in Yokosuka, Japan, Amphibious Group One and Amphibious Force U.S. Seventh Fleet in Okinawa, Japan. Other Asia-Pacific-related tours include serving on the Chief of Naval Operations staff as assistant branch head, Pacific Ocean Area/Pacific Plans and Policy Branch (OP-612C) and attending the Indian Defense Services Staff College in Wellington, India, where he earned a master's degree in defense studies.
"The President of the United States himself has said that America is a Pacific nation, and he declared that we stand more committed than ever to forward presence in the region," Doran said.
Doran also has served and sailed in the Mediterranean, Arabian Gulf and Atlantic. He was also deputy commander-in-chief and chief of staff of the U.S. Southern Command, responsible for all U.S. military activities in South and Central America.
Doran most recently was the assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington, D.C. He attended Villanova University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in history and was commissioned an ensign in the Navy through the Naval Reserve Officer Training Program in 1967.