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Admiral Charles Michel

Former Vice Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard


Admiral Charles Michel assumed the duties as the 30th Vice Commandant on August 6, 2015.  As the former Vice Service Chief and Chief Operating Officer, Admiral Michel executed the Commandant's Strategic Intent, managed internal organizational governance and served as the Component Acquisition Executive.

Prior to this appointment, Admiral Michel served as the Deputy Commandant for Operations, responsible for establishing and providing operational strategy, policy, guidance and resources to meet national priorities for U.S. Coast Guard missions, programs and services.

His previous flag officer assignments include Deputy Commander, U. S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area; Director, Joint Interagency Task Force South; Military Advisor to the Secretary of Homeland Security; and Director for Governmental and Public Affairs, U. S. Coast Guard.

Tours of duty afloat included serving as Commanding Officer, USCGC RESOLUTE; as Executive Officer, USCGC DAUNTLESS; as Commanding Officer, USCGC CAPE CURRENT; and as Deck Watch Officer, USCGC DECISIVE. Admiral Michel also served as Chief of the Office of Maritime and International Law, Washington, DC; Staff Attorney, Eighth Coast Guard District, New Orleans, Louisiana; head of the Operations Division, Office of Maritime and International Law, Washington, DC; and as Legislative Counsel for the Office of Congressional and Governmental Affairs, Washington, DC.

A native of Brandon, Florida, he graduated from the U. S. Coast Guard Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Engineering (with high honors) in 1985. In 1992, he graduated summa cum laude from the University of Miami School of Law as the salutatorian, receiving membership in the Order of the Coif.

Admiral Michel has been awarded the Coast Guard Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal and also the Distinguished Service Medal of the Colombian Navy.  Admiral Michel was the American Bar Association Young Lawyer of the Year for the Coast Guard in 1995, the Judge Advocate’s Association Career Armed Services Attorney of the Year for the Coast Guard in 2000, and is currently a member of the Florida Bar.  On May 24, 2016, he became the first four-star Vice Commandant in Coast Guard history and also the first career judge advocate in any of the Armed Forces to achieve four-star rank.