Vice Adm. Yvette Davids has been confirmed as the next superintendent of the U.S. Naval Academy — the first woman to ever hold the post.
Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro and then-Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday nominated Davids to serve as the superintendent of the school in April. But her confirmation was among the hundreds delayed by a Senate hold on military confirmations.
“The Superintendent is indeed more than just a president of a college – they are a leader, a mentor, a role model for everyone stationed here over the years – from the most junior Sailor and Midshipman to the senior-most faculty members and military officers,” Del Toro said during a change of command ceremony on Thursday, according to a Navy news release.
“Their vision, their decisions, their conduct shapes the future leaders of our Fleet and our Force, ensuring that this institution graduates men and women of honor, of courage, and of commitment to our national security to ensure the United States of America remains a beacon of hope and prosperity,” Del Toro said.
Davids graduated from the Naval Academy in 1989 and became the first Hispanic American woman to lead a Navy warship in 2007 as the commanding officer of the frigate Curts. She also served as the commanding officer of the cruiser Bunker Hill, and as commander of Carrier Strike Group 11.
Additionally, she became the director of the Learning to Action Drive Team in 2022, which launched following the massive 2020 fire aboard the amphibious assault ship Bonhomme Richard to ensure lessons learned from Navy ship fires are executed.
“I am beyond honored to become the 65th Superintendent of the United States Naval Academy, and I look back on the experiences of those before me to guide the way ahead,” Davids said, according to a Navy news release. “In the lasting words of Navy legend Admiral Grace Hopper, who in 1985 spoke to my Plebe Class, ‘A ship in port is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for. Sail out to sea and do new things,’ which we will do together. I look forward to the exceptional semesters, moments, and experiences we will share.”
Davids relieved Rear Adm. Fred Kacher, who has been confirmed to serve as the commander of U.S. 7th Fleet, as acting superintendent of the U.S. Naval Academy. Kacher led the military academy since August, and is headed to Yokosuka, Japan, for his next assignment.
“I am thankful for the Brigade of Midshipmen who made me want to be a better leader every day,” Kacher said, according to a Navy news release. “It was a privilege to join our midshipmen as they committed to serve at ‘2 for 7′ night, celebrated at pep rallies, competed all over the Yard and country, and earned their service assignment as future leaders in the Navy and Marine Corps.”
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