Naval War College names Rear Admiral Shoshana Chatfield new President

Chatfield, who is currently serving as Commander, Joint Region Marianas, Guam, will be the first woman president in the history of the Naval War College.

Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer announced today that Rear Admiral (lower half) Shoshana S. Chatfield will be the new president of the Naval War College.

Chatfield, who will be the 57th President of the Naval War College, will also be the first woman president in its history.

This appointment comes just days after Jeffrey Harley, former The Naval War College President, was administratively reassigned to the Director of Navy Staff. According to the AP, the military was investigating Harley amid allegations that “he spent excessively, abused his hiring authority and otherwise behaved inappropriately, including keeping a margarita machine in his office”.

“Rear Admiral Chatfield is a historic choice for the Naval War College. She is the embodiment of the type of warrior-scholar we need now to lead this storied institution as it educates our next generation of leaders,” said Spencer in a prepared statement. “As our Education for Seapower (E4S) Study noted, our capacity for critical thinking in an age of increasing complexity will be our most important strategic advantage. Admiral Chatfield will play a pivotal role in leading the War College as it integrates into the new Naval University system we are now establishing to foster a culture of continuous learning in the naval services.”

According to her bio provided by the Navy, Chatfield is a native of Garden Grove, California, and graduated from Boston University in 1987 with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and French Language and Literature. She received her commission through Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) in 1988 and earned her wings of gold in 1989. Chatfield was awarded the Navy’s Political/Military (Pol-Mil) Scholarship and attended the Kennedy School of Government, receiving a Master of Public Administration from Harvard University in 1997. In 2009, the University of San Diego conferred upon her the degree of Doctor of Education.

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She is a naval aviator (helicopters) who commanded at both the squadron and wing levels. She also served as a Provincial Reconstruction Team Commander in Farah Province, Afghanistan. She is currently serving as Commander, Joint Region Marianas, Guam.

Established in 1884, NWC is the oldest institution of its kind in the world. More than 50,000 students have graduated since its first class of nine students in 1885 and about 300 of today’s active duty admirals, generals and senior executive service leaders are alumni.

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