Chief of Naval Operations
The chief of naval operations (CNO) is the professional head of the United States Navy. The position is a statutory office (10 U.S.C. § 8033) held by an admiral who is a military adviser and deputy to the secretary of the Navy. In a separate capacity as a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (10 U.S.C. § 151), the CNO is a military adviser to the National Security Council, the Homeland Security Council, the secretary of defense, and the president. The current chief of naval operations is Admiral Michael M. Gilday.
|Chief of Naval Operations|
|United States Navy|
Office of the Chief of Naval Operations
|Member of||Joint Chiefs of Staff|
|Reports to||Secretary of the Navy|
with Senate advice and consent
|Term length||4 years|
Renewable one time, only during war or national emergency
|Constituting instrument||10 U.S.C. § 8033|
|Precursor||Aide for Naval Operations|
|Formation||11 May 1915|
|First holder||ADM William S. Benson|
|Deputy||Vice Chief of Naval Operations|
Despite the title, the CNO does not have operational command authority over naval forces. The CNO is an administrative position based in the Pentagon, and exercises supervision of Navy organizations as the designee of the secretary of the Navy. Operational command of naval forces falls within the purview of the combatant commanders who report to the secretary of defense.