Naval Academy Names Special Warfare Officer as 90th Commandant of Midshipmen

U.S. Naval Academy midshipmen sing their alma mater after winning the 2019 Army-Navy Game in Philadelphia.
U.S. Naval Academy midshipmen sing their alma mater after winning the 2019 Army-Navy Game in Philadelphia, Dec. 14. (Sgt. Dana Clarke/U.S. Army photo)

Capt. Walter H. Allman III will take the helm as the U.S. Naval Academy's 90th commandant of midshipmen this summer, the academy announced Wednesday.

Allman, a 1997 graduate of the Naval Academy, will return to Annapolis from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, where he currently serves as director of Targeting and the Fires and Effects Center for the U.S. Pacific Fleet.

Allman will assume the role from current Commandant of Midshipmen Col. James "J.P." McDonough III, who has served in the position for three years.

McDonough will retire after 30 years of service in the U.S. Marine Corps, a spokesperson for the academy said.

The commandant of midshipmen is responsible for day-to-day conduct, military training and professional development of more than 4,400 midshipmen at the academy.

Allman is a career naval special warfare officer. His previous assignments include SEAL Teams 1 and 3 and SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team 1. He also served with the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, where he completed several combat deployments and contingency operations in support of Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

His command tours include Tactical Development and Evaluation Squadron 4 and Naval Special Warfare Groups 3 and 8.

While a midshipman at the Naval Academy, Allman was named an honorable mention All-American for the academy's sailing team in 1996 and 1997.

Allman earned a master's degree in defense analysis from the Naval Postgraduate School. He later researched concepts for the Navy's future of undersea warfare operations and served a staff tour as a naval special warfare officer detailer in Tennessee.

He is a recipient of numerous military awards, including the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star with Combat 'V' and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.

Allman isn't the only recently announced change in leadership at the Naval Academy.

In January, Vice Adm. Yvette Davids became the academy's 65th superintendent -- the first woman to occupy that role. Davids took the reins from Rear Adm. Fred Kacher, who served as acting superintendent for five months following Vice Adm. Sean Buck's retirement in September.

"I am honored for the opportunity to lead the Brigade of Midshipmen and to mold our next generation of Navy and Marine Corps leaders," Allman said in a news release. "The enthusiasm and dedication demonstrated by the Brigade, staff, and faculty are inspiring. Our family looks forward to returning to the Naval Academy and joining a team committed to supporting the mission and facing the challenges of today."

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