Christopher W. Grady


Christopher Watson Grady (born November 28, 1962)[1][2] is a United States Navy admiral who serves as the 12th vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff since December 20, 2021.[3] He most recently served as the commander of United States Fleet Forces Command and United States Naval Forces Northern Command from May 2018 to December 2021, with additional duties as commander of United States Naval Forces Strategic Command and Joint Force Maritime Component Commander from February 2019. He previously served as commander of the United States Sixth Fleet, commander of Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO, deputy commander of United States Naval Forces Europe - Naval Forces Africa and Joint Force Maritime Component Commander Europe from October 2016 to March 2018.

Christopher W. Grady
ADM Christopher W. Grady (2).jpg
Official portrait, 2021
Born (1962-11-28) November 28, 1962 (age 59)
Portsmouth, Virginia, United States
AllegianceUnited States
Service/branchUnited States Navy
Years of service1984–present
Commands held

A 1984 graduate of the University of Notre Dame, Grady commissioned into the Navy via the Naval Reserve Officers' Training Corps program. Grady is currently the Navy's "Old Salt", designating the longest-serving surface warfare officer on active duty in the U.S. Navy, having received the title and accompanying trophy from Admiral Philip S. Davidson on April 30, 2021.[4]

Naval careerEdit

Rear Adm. Grady, as commander, Carrier Strike Group 1, prepares food on Thanksgiving dinner for sailors aboard the USS Carl Vinson, November 27, 2014.

Christopher Grady was born in Portsmouth, Virginia[1] and raised in Newport, Rhode Island. He is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame,[5] and was commissioned an ensign in the United States Navy through the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps program in 1984.[6] Grady is a distinguished graduate of Georgetown University, where he earned a Master of Arts in National Security Studies while concurrently participating as a fellow in Foreign Service at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. He is also a distinguished graduate of the National War College earning a Master of Science in National Security Affairs.[7]

Grady's initial sea tour was aboard USS Moosbrugger (DD 980), where he served as combat information center officer and anti-submarine warfare officer. As a department head, he served as weapons control officer and combat systems officer in USS Princeton (CG 59). He was commanding officer of Mine Counter Measure Rotational Crew Echo in USS Chief (MCM 14), and deployed to the Persian Gulf in command of USS Ardent (MCM 12). Grady then commanded USS Cole (DDG 67) deploying as part of NATO's Standing Naval Forces Mediterranean. He then commanded Destroyer Squadron 22, deploying to the Persian Gulf as sea combat commander for the Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group (TRCSG) in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.

Vice Adm. Grady visits the Lindormen-class support vessel EML Wambola (A433) during exercise BALTOPS 2017, June 10, 2017.

Ashore, Grady first served on the staff of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and then as naval aide to the chief of naval operations. He also served on the staff of the chief of naval operations as assistant branch head, Europe and Eurasia Politico-Military Affairs Branch (OPNAV N524). He then served as executive assistant to the navy's Chief of Legislative Affairs. Next, he served as the deputy executive secretary of the National Security Council in the White House. He then went on to serve as the executive assistant to the chief of naval operations.

Grady's flag assignments include the Director of the Maritime Operations Center (N2/3/5/7), commander, United States Pacific Fleet; Commander, Carrier Strike Group 1 and the Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group where he deployed for nearly 10 months to the Western Pacific and the Persian Gulf conducting combat operations in support of Operation Inherent Resolve. He was then commander, Naval Surface Force Atlantic.

Grady is sworn in as the 12th vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff by Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on December 20, 2021.

As a vice admiral, he commanded the United States Sixth Fleet from October 28, 2016[8] to March 1, 2018, relinquishing command to Vice Admiral Lisa Franchetti.[9] On October 31, 2017, the United States Senate confirmed Grady's reappointment to the rank of vice admiral and assignment as the assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.[10][11]

On February 28, 2018, Grady was nominated by President Donald Trump for appointment to the rank of admiral and assignment as commander of United States Fleet Forces Command,[12] and confirmed by the Senate on March 22, 2018.[13] He assumed command of USFFC and Naval Forces Northern Command on May 4, 2018[14] and of commander, Naval Forces Strategic Command (NAVSTRAT) and United States Strategic Command Joint Force Maritime Component Command (JFMCC) on February 1, 2019.[15][16]

Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of StaffEdit

On November 1, 2021, he was nominated to succeed retiring General John E. Hyten as the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.[17][18] A nomination hearing was scheduled for December 2, 2021, but it was postponed in favor of Senate negotiations on the 2022 NDAA.[19] He was confirmed by voice vote on December 16, 2021,[18] and was sworn in on December 20, 2021.[20]

Awards and decorationsEdit

Grady accepts the 'Old Salt' Award on board USS Cole (DDG 67) on April 30, 2021.

In addition to the below, the University of Notre Dame Alumni Board presented Grady with the Rev. William Corby, C.S.C., Award on September 28, 2019. Established in 1985, the award is conferred on alumni who have distinguished themselves in military service.[21]

  Surface Warfare Officer Insignia
  Command at Sea insignia
  Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Identification Badge
  Presidential Service Badge
  Defense Distinguished Service Medal[22]
  Navy Distinguished Service Medal
  Defense Superior Service Medal
      Legion of Merit with four gold award stars
      Meritorious Service Medal with four award stars
  Joint Service Commendation Medal
      Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with Combat V and three award stars
  Joint Service Achievement Medal
  Joint Meritorious Unit Award
Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation with one bronze service star
  Navy "E" Ribbon with three Battle "E" devices
  Navy Expeditionary Medal
National Defense Service Medal with service star
  Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Southwest Asia Service Medal with service star
  Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
  Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with silver service star
  Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait)
  Navy Expert Rifleman Medal
  Navy Expert Pistol Shot Medal
  • Surface Navy Association's "Old Salt" Award [4]


  1. ^ a b "Certificate of Birth". Births, 1864-2016. No. 078915. Richmond, Virginia: Virginia Department of Health. 1962.
  2. ^ Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy on Active Duty. Bureau of Naval Personnel. October 1, 1990. p. 96. Retrieved June 8, 2021.
  3. ^ Mahshie, Abraham (December 17, 2021). "Adm. Grady Confirmed as Joint Chiefs Vice Chair, Filling Monthlong Vacancy". Air Force Magazine. Archived from the original on 2021-12-18. Retrieved December 19, 2021.
  4. ^ a b Macchietto, Brooke (May 1, 2021). "FLEET FORCES COMMANDER BECOMES NAVY'S 'OLD SALT'". U.S. Fleet Forces Command. Retrieved May 9, 2021.
  5. ^ "University of Notre Dame du Lac 1984 Commencement | May 18–20" (PDF). p. 31. Retrieved May 14, 2018.
  6. ^ Admiral Christopher Grady ‘84 – Notre Dame Day 2018
  7. ^ "Admiral Christopher W. Grady". US Navy. Retrieved 28 February 2018.
  8. ^ LaGrone, Sam (October 28, 2016). "Vice Adm. Grady Takes Command of U.S. 6th Fleet". USNI News. Retrieved December 19, 2021.
  9. ^ Wyland, Scott (March 1, 2018). "Franchetti takes command of 6th Fleet". Stars and Stripes. Retrieved December 19, 2021.
  10. ^ Flag Officer Announcement – October 17, 2017
  11. ^ PN1122 — Vice Adm. Christopher W. Grady — Navy
  12. ^ Flag Officer Announcement – February 28, 2018
  13. ^ PN1667 — Vice Adm. Christopher W. Grady — Navy
  14. ^ US Navy Biography – Admiral Christopher W. Grady
  15. ^ – Grady's Bio
  16. ^ US Fleet Forces Commander Designated as NAVSTRAT, JFMCC STRAT
  17. ^ "Flag Officer Announcement". U.S. Department of Defense. Retrieved 2021-11-02.
  18. ^ a b "PN1328 — Adm. Christopher W. Grady — Navy". November 1, 2021. Retrieved November 1, 2021.
  19. ^ "Nomination - Grady (Postponed)". US Senate Committee on Armed Services. Retrieved 2 December 2021.
  20. ^ Mahshie, Abraham (December 20, 2021). "Adm. Christopher W. Grady Sworn in as Vice Chairman of Joint Chiefs". Air Force Magazine. Retrieved December 21, 2021.
  21. ^ "Admiral Grady Receives Rev. William Colby Award". DVIDS. Retrieved 2021-07-16.
  22. ^ Christopher W. Grady (8 December 2021). U.S. Fleet Forces Change of Command. USS George H.W. Bush: U.S. Fleet Forces Command. Retrieved 9 December 2021.
Military offices
Preceded by Director of Maritime Operations of the United States Pacific Fleet
Succeeded by
Preceded by
David F. Steindl
Commander of Carrier Strike Group 1
Succeeded by
James T. Loeblein
Preceded by Commander of Naval Surface Force Atlantic
Succeeded by
Patrick A. Piercey
Preceded by Commander of the United States Sixth Fleet and Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO
Succeeded by
Preceded by Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Succeeded by
Preceded by Commander of the United States Fleet Forces Command
Succeeded by
Preceded by Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded byas former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (2015–2019) Order of precedence of the United States
as Vice Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Succeeded byas Commandant of the Marine Corps