AUGUST 15, 2012 — Acting Secretary of Commerce Rebecca M. Blank has appointed NOAA Rear Adm. Michael S. Devany director of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps and the NOAA Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO). This action follows the recent Senate confirmation of Devany's promotion to the rank of rear admiral.
The NOAA Corps is one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. NOAA Corps officers operate and manage the agency's fleet of ships and aircraft and support NOAA's mission in a wide variety of shore-side assignments. NOAA Corps offices and OMAO's civilian personnel serve aboard NOAA ships and aircraft and at OMAO facilities nationwide.
As director, Admiral Devany will be responsible for the agency's fleet of research and survey ships and aircraft, as well as guiding the 311 uniformed officers and about 1,000 civilian personnel assigned to the NOAA Corps and the Office of Marine and Aviation Operations.
"Rear Adm. Devany is a highly qualified and capable leader with a long history of distinguished service to NOAA and the nation," said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. "He will play a vital role in ensuring the readiness and efficient operation of the NOAA science fleet, which is a critical part of the nation's research infrastructure."
A NOAA Corps officer since 1990, Admiral Devany has more than 20 years of experience in environmental restoration, response, compliance, and data acquisition in the marine environment. He also has extensive experience in collaborating with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, the Environmental Protection Agency, and coastal states in planning and response to oil spills and releases of hazardous materials.
Admiral Devany sailed as commanding officer of NOAA ships Oscar Elton Sette and John N. Cobb, and served on three other NOAA ships. Prior to serving with NOAA, he sailed as a U.S. Navy surface warfare officer on the destroyer USS John Young. Ashore, he has served as commanding officer of NOAA's Marine Operations Center-Atlantic in Norfolk, Va., and most recently as director of NOAA's Marine and Aviation Operations Center in Silver Spring, Md., which conducts the day-to-day operations of the 19 research and survey ships and 11 aircraft in NOAA's fleet.
Admiral Devany has received multiple NOAA special achievement awards and NOAA Corps commendation medals. While serving in the U.S. Navy, he was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal and the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal for service in the Persian Gulf. He holds a master's degree in public health from the University of South Florida and a bachelor of science degree in biology from the University of Washington. He is a NOAA working diver, and holds a U.S. Coast Guard 1,600-ton masters license for ocean vessels. He and his wife, Tracy Bishop, reside in Vienna, Va., with their three children.
Admiral Devany relieves NOAA Rear Adm. Jonathan W. Bailey, who served as director of the NOAA Corps and OMAO since 2007. NOAA Corps officer David A. Score, who was recently promoted to rear admiral (lower half), will serve as director of NOAA's Marine and Aviation Operations center.