African American Flag Officers in the US Navy

Active Duty (16):

Haney, Cecil E., Admiral, USN

Curtis, Derwood C., Vice Admiral, USN
Howard, Michelle, Vice Admiral, USN
Robinson, Adam M., Jr., Vice Admiral, USN
Winns, Anthony L., Vice Admiral, USN

Caesar, Julius S., Rear Admiral, USN
Carodine, Ken, Rear Admiral, USN
Crawford, James W., III, Rear Admiral, USN
Gay, Earl L., Rear Admiral, USN
Grooms, Bruce E., Rear Admiral, USN
Guillory,Victor G., Rear Admiral, USN
Johnson, Arthur J., Jr., Rear Admiral, USN

Andrews, Annie B., Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Dixon, Kelvin N., Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Griffith, Vince, Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Hayes, Norman, Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Harris, Sinclair, Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Metts, Willie L., Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Ponds, Fernandez L., Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Scott, Kevin, Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Shepherd, Dwight D., Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Smith, John W., Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN
Young, Eric C., Rear Admiral (Lower Half), USN

Retired: (25)

Williams, Melvin G., Jr., Vice Admiral, USN
Gravely, Samuel Lee, Jr., Vice Admiral, USN
Reason, J. Paul, Admiral, USN
Davis, Walter Jackson, Jr., Vice Admiral, USN
Moore, Edward, Jr., Vice Admiral, USN
Brewer, David L., III, Vice Admiral, USN
Black, Barry C., Rear Admiral, USN
Bookert, Reubin B., Rear Admiral, USN
Chambers, Lawrence Cleveland, Rear Admiral, USN
Combs, Osie V., Jr., Rear Admiral, USN
Fishburne, Lillian E., Rear Admiral, USN
Fussell, M. Eugene, Rear Admiral, MC, USNR
Gaston, Mack Charles, Rear Admiral, USN
Hacker, Benjamin Thurman, Rear Admiral, USN
Hart, Steven E., Rear Admiral, USN
Johnson, James A., Rear Admiral, USN
Johnson, Wendell Norman, Rear Admiral, USN
Kendall, Gene R., Rear Admiral, USN
Marsh, Willie C., Rear Admiral, USN
Poe, Larry L., Rear Admiral, USN
Powell, William Egbert, Jr., Rear Admiral, USN
Smith, Vinson E., Rear Admiral, USN
Thomas, Gerald Eustis, Rear Admiral, USN
Toney, Robert Lee, Rear Admiral, USN
Watson, Anthony J., Rear Admiral, USN
Williams, Louis Alvin, Rear Admiral, USN


  • Admiral Reason became the first African American to become a full admiral (four-star) in December 1996 when he became Commander in Chief, Atlantic Fleet.
  • Admiral Chambers became the first African American to command an aircraft carrier when he became commanding officer of the USS Midway (CV-41) and was the first African American graduate of the Naval Academy to reach flag rank, Chambers was promoted to Rear Admiral in 1976
  • Vice Admiral Gravely became the first African American to be promoted to rear admiral on 7 July 1971 and the first African American to become a vice admiral on 10 September 1976.
  • Rear Admiral Lillian E. Fishburne became the first female African American to be promoted to rear admiral.
  • Rear Admiral Fussell is the first African American naval reserve officer to become an admiral.
  • Rear Admiral Watson is the first African American submariner to make flag rank.

Note: MC = Medical Corps, USN = US Navy (Regular Navy), USNR = US Naval Reserve.

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