Michael M. Gilday

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Michael Gilday
Gilday CNO.jpg
Gilday in 2019
Birth nameMichael Martin Gilday
Born (1962-10-10) October 10, 1962 (age 58)
Lowell, Massachusetts, U.S.
AllegianceUnited States
Service/branchUnited States Navy
Years of service1985–present
Commands heldChief of Naval Operations
United States Tenth Fleet
Fleet Cyber Command
Carrier Strike Group 8
Destroyer Squadron 7
USS Benfold
USS Higgins
Battles/warsGulf War
AwardsDefense Distinguished Service Medal
Navy Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal (4)
Legion of Merit (3)
Bronze Star Medal

Michael Martin Gilday (born October 10, 1962) is a United States Navy officer who has served as the 32nd chief of naval operations since August 22, 2019. Gilday has commanded two destroyers, served as Director of the Joint Staff, commanded the Tenth Fleet/Fleet Cyber Command, and led Carrier Strike Group 8.[1]

Early life and education

Gilday was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, and is a 1985 graduate of the United States Naval Academy as a Surface Warfare Officer. He has also graduated from the Harvard Kennedy School and the National War College.[1][2]


Gilday's previous tours include duty with USS Chandler, USS Princeton, as well as commanding the USS Higgins and USS Benfold and Destroyer Squadron 7. He also had staff assignments on the Bureau of Naval Personnel, Chief of Naval Operation (Strategic Plans and Policy Directorate) and staff to the vice chief of naval operations. His joint assignments include Naval Aide to the President and executive assistant to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.[1][3]

As a flag officer, Gilday served as Director of Operations for NATO's Joint Force Command in Lisbon and Director of Operations for United States Cyber Command.[1] He assumed the duties of Commander, Fleet Cyber Command and United States Tenth Fleet on July 14, 2016,[4] was appointed Director of Operations for the Joint Chiefs of Staff in May 2018, and became Director of the Joint Staff from March 1, 2019.[5]

On July 11, 2019, Gilday was nominated for appointment as the next chief of naval operations (CNO).[6] On August 1, the United States Senate voted unanimously to award Gilday a fourth star following the Senate Armed Services Committee's recommendation that he succeed Admiral John M. Richardson as CNO in September 2019.[7]

On April 15, 2020 Gilday announced the Navy was considering reinstating Brett Crozier, earlier fired in relation to Crozier's controversial response to coronavirus disease on the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt.[8] Gilday, and the acting United States secretary of the Navy, James E. McPherson recommended that Crozier be reinstated as Captain of the Roosevelt on April 25, 2020.[9]

On 10 August 2020, Gilday was running on the Washington Navy Yard base, where he lives, when he “fell ill”. Gilday was assisted by a passing Marine, and was taken to his physician. He underwent heart surgery for a pre-existing condition about two weeks later. He returned to work full-time on 28 September 2020.[10][11]

Awards and decorations

Surface Warfare Officer Insignia.png
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg 1 golden star.svg1 golden star.svg
1 golden star.svg1 golden star.svg
"V" device, brass.svg1 golden star.svg1 golden star.svg
Gold star
Bronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svgBronze oakleaf-3d.svg
Bronze star
Silver star
Bronze star
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal ribbon.svg
United States Navy Rifle Marksmanship Ribbon with sharpshooter device.svg U.S. Navy Expert Pistol Shot Ribbon.svg
Navy CaS.png
Joint Chiefs of Staff seal.svg
US - Presidential Service Badge.png
Surface Warfare Officer Pin[1][12]
Defense Distinguished Service Medal
Navy Distinguished Service Medal Defense Superior Service Medal w/ 3 bronze oak leaf clusters Legion of Merit w/ 2 gold award stars
Bronze Star Medal Defense Meritorious Service Medal Meritorious Service Medal w/ 2 award stars
Joint Service Commendation Medal Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal w/ "V" device and 2 award stars Joint Service Achievement Medal
Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal w/ 1 award star Combat Action Ribbon Joint Meritorious Unit Award w/ 4 oak leaf clusters
Navy Unit Commendation w/ 1 bronze service star Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation w/ 1 silver service star Navy "E" Ribbon with wreathed Battle E device
National Defense Service Medal with service star Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with 4 service stars Southwest Asia Service Medal with 2 service stars
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal Global War on Terrorism Service Medal Humanitarian Service Medal
Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon w/ 3 service stars Navy and Marine Corps Overseas Service Ribbon Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)
Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) Navy Rifle Marksmanship Ribbon with Sharpshooter Device Navy Expert Pistol Shot Medal
Command at Sea insignia
Joint Chiefs of Staff Badge
Presidential Service Badge


  1. ^ a b c d e "U.S. Navy bio". Department of the Navy. July 14, 2016. Retrieved June 4, 2017.
  2. ^ "Navy.mil - Chief of Naval Operations Bio". navy.mil. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  3. ^ "The Valley Dispatch: Lowell native leads Navy's Fleet Cyber Command". The Valley Dispatch. September 6, 2016. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  4. ^ "ExecutiveGov: Michael Gilday Succeeds Jan Tighe as US Fleet Cyber Command Chief". July 19, 2016. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  5. ^ "Vice Adm. Michael Gilday". March 4, 2019. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  6. ^ "Navy to nominate three-star for CNO". July 11, 2019. Retrieved July 11, 2019.
  7. ^ "Inside the historic decision to deep-select the Navy's top officer". August 6, 2019. Retrieved August 11, 2019.
  8. ^ "Navy may reinstate fired captain to command of USS Roosevelt". NYT. Retrieved April 15, 2020.
  9. ^ Cooper, Helene; Eric Schmitt and Thomas Gibbons-Neff (April 24, 2020). "Navy Leaders Recommend Reinstating Roosevelt Captain Fired Over Virus Warning". SF Gate.
  10. ^ Navy Chief Fell Ill, Underwent Heart Surgery, Officials Say - Adm. Gilday was stricken in August while running, Gordon Lubold and Nancy A. Youssef, Wall Street Journal, 2020-09-29
  11. ^ Report: CNO ‘fell ill,’ had heart surgery last month, Navy Times, 2020-09-30
  12. ^ "Military Times, Hall of Valor: Michael Martin Gilday". Retrieved June 6, 2017.

External links

Military offices
Preceded by
Jan E. Tighe
Commander of United States Tenth Fleet/Fleet Cyber Command
Succeeded by
Timothy J. White
Preceded by
John L. Dolan
Director for Operations of the Joint Staff
Succeeded by
Andrew P. Poppas
Preceded by
Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr.
Director of the Joint Staff
Succeeded by
Glen D. VanHerck
Preceded by
John M. Richardson
Chief of Naval Operations
Order of precedence
Preceded by
James C. McConville
as Chief of Staff of the United States Army
Order of precedence of the United States
as Chief of Naval Operations
Succeeded by
Charles Q. Brown Jr.
as Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force
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