United States Secretaries of the Navy

Posted May 24, 2011
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  1. John Warner

    John Warner


    John William Warner (born February 18, 1927) served as Secretary of the Navy from 1972 to 1974 and as a five-term Republican United States Senator from Virginia from January 2, 1979, to January 3, 2009. He did not seek reelection in 2008 and has rejoined the law firm of Hogan Lovells, where he worked before joining the United States Department of Defense. Warner was also the sixth husband of actress Elizabeth Taylor, whom he married before being elected to the Senate. He is a veteran of World War II, and one of only five serving in the Senate at the time of his retirement.

  2. John Connally

    John Connally


    John Bowden Connally, Jr. (February 27, 1917 – June 15, 1993), was an American politician. As a Democrat he served as the 39th Governor of Texas, as Secretary of the Navy under President John F. Kennedy, and as Secretary of the Treasury under President Richard M. Nixon. As Treasury Secretary, Connally is best remembered for removing the U.S. dollar from the gold standard in 1971, an event known as the Nixon shock. On November 22, 1963, Connally, at the time the Governor of Texas, was a passenger in the car in which President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, and was seriously wounded during the shooting.

  3. James Webb

    James Webb


    James Henry "Jim" Webb, Jr. (born February 9, 1946) is an American politician and author. He has served as a United States Senator from Virginia, Secretary of the Navy, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs, Counsel for the United States House Committee on Veterans' Affairs and Marine Corps officer.

  4. Charles Joseph Bonaparte

    Charles Joseph Bonaparte


    Charles Joseph Bonaparte (June 9, 1851 – June 28, 1921) was an American lawyer and political activist for progressive and liberal causes. Originally from Baltimore, Maryland. he served in the cabinet of the 26th U.S. President, Theodore Roosevelt.

  5. Edward Hidalgo

    Edward Hidalgo


    Edward Hidalgo (born Eduardo Hidalgo; October 12, 1912 – January 21, 1995) served as the United States Secretary of the Navy in the Carter administration from October 24, 1979 to January 20, 1981. He had previously served as Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Manpower and Reserve Affairs) from April 1977 to October 1979.

  6. James Forrestal

    James Forrestal


    James Vincent Forrestal (February 15, 1892 – May 22, 1949) was the last Cabinet-level United States Secretary of the Navy and the first United States Secretary of Defense.

  7. John Chafee

    John Chafee


    John Lester Hubbard Chafee (/ˈf/ CHAY-fee; October 22, 1922 – October 24, 1999) was an American politician. He served as an officer in the United States Marine Corps, as the 66th Governor of Rhode Island, as the Secretary of the Navy, and as a United States Senator.

  8. Victor H. Metcalf

    Victor H. Metcalf


    Victor Howard Metcalf (October 10, 1853 – February 20, 1936) was an American politician; he served in President Theodore Roosevelt's cabinet an Secretary of Commerce and Labor, and then as Secretary of the Navy.

  9. Curtis D. Wilbur

    Curtis D. Wilbur


    Curtis Dwight Wilbur (May 10, 1867 – September 8, 1954) was an American lawyer and official. He was appointed to the United States Naval Academy in 1884. Shortly after graduation, Curtis Wilbur resigned his commission, a common practice at the time, and moved to Riverside, California. He was admitted to the California bar in 1890 and served as Los Angeles Deputy Assistant District Attorney. Curtis Wilbur moved to the Superior Court in 1903, and finally, in 1918, to the California Supreme Court where he served as the 19th Chief Justice of California. Curtis Wilbur lived with his wife and children in a grand home completed in 1904 on Frederick Knob in San Francisco.

  10. Ray Mabus

    Ray Mabus


    Raymond Edwin "Ray" Mabus, Jr. (born October 11, 1948) is an American politician and member of the Democratic Party who has served as the 75th United States Secretary of the Navy since 2009. Mabus previously served as the State Auditor of Mississippi from 1984 to 1988, as the 59th Governor of Mississippi from 1988 to 1992 and as the United States Ambassador to Saudi Arabia from 1994 to 1996.

  11. Paul Hamilton

    Paul Hamilton


    Paul Ebiye Hamilton (born July 31, 1941) is a former Nigerian footballer and manager.

  12. Abel P. Upshur

    Abel P. Upshur


    Abel Parker Upshur (June 17, 1790 – February 28, 1844) was an American lawyer, judge and politician from Virginia. Upshur was active in Virginia state politics and later served as Secretary of the Navy and Secretary of State during the Whig administration of President John Tyler. Upshur was instrumental in negotiating the secret treaty that led to the 1845 annexation of Texas to the United States and played a key role in ensuring that Texas was admitted to the United States as a slave state. He was among six people killed on February 28, 1844, when a gun exploded during an official function on board the President's steam warship USS Princeton.

  13. Thomas S. Gates, Jr.

    Thomas S. Gates, Jr.


    Thomas Sovereign Gates Jr. (April 10, 1906 – March 25, 1983) was United States Secretary of Defense from 1959 to 1961 under President Eisenhower. He was promoted from deputy secretary of defense. During his tenure, he established a task force to set nuclear target priorities. He also authorized U-2 reconnaissance flights, including the flight of Francis Gary Powers.

  14. B. J. Penn (U.S. Navy)

    B. J. Penn (U.S. Navy)


    B. J. Penn was the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Installation and Environment) in the United States Department of the Navy from 2005 to 2009. He briefly served as acting United States Secretary of the Navy from March 13, 2009 to May 19, 2009.

  15. John Y. Mason

    John Y. Mason


    John Young Mason (April 18, 1799 – October 3, 1859) was an American politician, diplomat, and United States federal judge.

  16. Donald C. Winter

    Donald C. Winter


    Donald Charles Winter (born June 15, 1948) is an American businessman who served as United States Secretary of the Navy. A former top executive of TRW, Aerospace & Defense, he was nominated in 2005 by President George W. Bush, confirmed by the United States Senate, and took the oath of office on January 3, 2006. In January 2009 Defense Secretary Gates requested that Winter remain in office until President Obama picked his successor on March 13, 2009. He resigned on March 13.

  17. William B. Franke

    William B. Franke


    William Birrell Franke (April 15, 1894 – June 30, 1979) was United States Secretary of the Navy from 1959 to 1961 under Dwight D. Eisenhower. Franke was born in Troy, New York and attended Pace College.

  18. W. Graham Claytor, Jr.

    W. Graham Claytor, Jr.


    William Graham Claytor, Jr. (March 14, 1912 – May 14, 1994) was an American lawyer, naval officer, and railroad, transportation and defense administrator for the United States government, working under the administrations of three US presidents.

  19. Claude A. Swanson

    Claude A. Swanson


    Claude Augustus Swanson (March 31, 1862 – July 7, 1939) was an American lawyer and Democratic politician from Virginia.

  20. Gideon Welles

    Gideon Welles


    Gideon Welles (July 1, 1802 – February 11, 1878) was the United States Secretary of the Navy from 1861 to 1869, a cabinet post he was given after supporting Lincoln in the 1860 election. Although opposed to the Union blockade of Southern ports, he duly carried out his part of the Anaconda Plan, largely sealing-off the Confederate coastline and preventing the exchange of cotton for war supplies. This is viewed as a major cause of Union victory in the Civil War, and his achievement in expanding the Navy almost tenfold was widely praised. Welles was also instrumental in the Navy's creation of the Medal of Honor.

  21. Paul Morton

    Paul Morton


    Paul Morton (May 22, 1857 – February 19, 1911) was a U.S. businessman, and served as the 36th Secretary of the Navy under Theodore Roosevelt.

  22. Robert B. Anderson

    Robert B. Anderson


    Robert Bernard Anderson (June 4, 1910 – August 14, 1989) was an American administrator and businessman. He served as the Secretary of the Navy between February 1953 and March 1954. He also served as the Secretary of the Treasury from 1957 until 1961, and was one of President Eisenhower's closest confidants.

  23. John Davis Long

    John Davis Long


    John Davis Long (October 27, 1838 – August 28, 1915) was an American lawyer, politician, and writer. He served as the 32nd Governor of Massachusetts between 1880 and 1883. He later served as the Secretary of the Navy from 1897 to 1902, a period that notably included the Spanish–American War.

  24. Paul Robert Ignatius

    Paul Robert Ignatius


    Paul Robert Ignatius (born November 11, 1920) was an American government official who served as Secretary of the Navy between 1967 and 1969 and was the Assistant Secretary of Defense during the Lyndon Johnson administration.

  25. Isaac Toucey

    Isaac Toucey


    Isaac Toucey (November 15, 1792 – July 30, 1869) was an American statesman who served as a U.S. senator, Secretary of the Navy, Attorney General of the United States and the 33rd Governor of Connecticut.

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