NOAA Corps officer promoted to rear admiral, appointed director of NOAA fleet operations

July 18, 2011

NOAA Corps officer Michael S. Devany was promoted to the rank of rear admiral (lower half) during a July 15 ceremony in Silver Spring, Md. Devany was also named director of NOAA’s Marine and Aviation Operations Centers (MAOC), assuming command of the day-to-day operations of the 18 research ships and 11 aircraft in NOAA’s fleet.

“Rear Adm. Devany is a highly capable leader and manager 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 key role in ensuring the readiness and efficient operation of the NOAA fleet, which is a vital part of the nation’s research infrastructure.”

A NOAA Corps officer since 1990, 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.

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, Devany has served as commanding officer of NOAA’s Marine Operations Center-Atlantic and most recently as director of NOAA’s Marine Operations Centers.

Devany has been recognized on numerous occasions for his outstanding service, receiving 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.

Devany 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 1600-ton masters license for ocean vessels.

Devany and his wife, Tracy Bishop, will reside in Vienna, Va., with their three children.

MAOC is part of the NOAA Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, headed by Rear Adm. (upper half) Jonathan W. Bailey. MAOC oversees NOAA’s Marine Operations Center-Atlantic in Norfolk, Va., Marine Operations Center-Pacific in Newport, Ore., and Aircraft Operations Center in Tampa, Fla. Headquartered in Silver Spring, Md., the NOAA Office of Marine and Aviation Operations manages, operates and maintains NOAA’s fleet of research ships and aircraft.

NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Join us on Facebook, Twitter and our other social media channels.