First Female Civil Engineer Corps Flag Officer Takes Command in Hawaii

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PEARL HARBOR – The Navy’s first female Civil Engineer Corps (CEC) flag officer takes command July 9, 2010 in a change of command ceremony to be held at Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Pacific headquarters at 10 a.m.

Rear Admiral Kate Gregory will be the first female CEC flag officer to take command when she relieves Rear Admiral Michael Giorgione as commander of NAVFAC Pacific. She was promoted to Rear Admiral June 1, 2010, becoming the first female CEC officer in the history of the Navy to attain this rank.


“The promotion is simply the result of generous mentoring by my chains of command, tremendous help from all the wonderful Navy men and women with whom I’ve served, friendship of my peers, and unfailing support of my friends – and most of all my family,” she said. “To all of them I am very grateful, and very humbled by the tremendous responsibility I have been given serving as the NAVFAC Pacific commander.”

A St. Louis native, Gregory was commissioned as a CEC officer after graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1982. She arrives in Hawaii from Little Creek, Va., where she served as the chief of staff for the First Naval Construction Division. She is no stranger to Hawaii, however, as she previously served as executive officer during the transformation of Public Works Center Pearl Harbor to the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii.

Her Seabee tours include assignments as company commander and detachment officer in charge, deploying to Honduras with Amphibious Construction Battalion 1, as the Seabee action officer at Naval Facilities Engineering Command headquarters in Washington, D.C., and as the executive officer of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 1.

Her first command tour was commanding officer of NMCB 133, with deployments to the European and Western Pacific theaters. She subsequently served as commander, 30th Naval Construction Regiment, during which she deployed to the Al Anbar Province, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Gregory holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the U.S. Naval Academy, the University of Southern California, and George Washington University; has completed the Senior Executive Program at the London School of Business; is a registered professional engineer in the Commonwealth of Virginia; and is a qualified Military Parachutist and Seabee Combat Warfare Officer. Her personal decorations include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.

Gregory assumes command of approximately 4,000 military and civilian men and women who work for NAVFAC Pacific and its three Facilities Engineering Commands in Hawaii, Guam, and Japan.

Giorgione, a native of Pittsburgh, was commissioned in 1981 through the U.S. Naval Academy. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Ocean Engineering from the United States Naval Academy in 1981, a Master of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Pennsylvania State University in 1988, an Executive Education Certificate from Duke University in 2002, and is a graduate of the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, Calif.

Giorgione’s initial tours in the Navy included duty with the Seabees in NMCB 133, where he was the S-2 training officer, and then the officer in charge of Civic Action Team 13315, deployed to Yap, Western Caroline Islands. Subsequent assignments included: assistant resident officer in charge of construction, Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines; public works officer and resident officer in charge of construction La Maddalena, Sardinia, Italy; Seabee rating assignment officer, Bureau of Naval Personnel; base readiness analyst, N81 Program Appraisal Division, Chief of Naval Operations; resident officer in charge of construction, Southwest Division, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, San Diego; public works officer, Naval Base Coronado; commanding officer, Camp David; executive officer, Public Works Center Pearl Harbor; and vice commander, Pacific Division, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Pearl Harbor.

Giorgione assumed command of NAVFAC Pacific June 8, 2007 after serving as commanding officer, NAVFAC Southwest and regional engineer, Commander, Navy Region Southwest in San Diego, Calif.

Giorgione is a qualified Seabee Combat Warfare Officer and a member of the Acquisition Professional Community. His personal decorations include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, and the Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal. He is a registered professional engineer in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

“It has been my distinct pleasure commanding the men and woman of NAVFAC Pacific,” said Giorgione. “It has also been the culmination of a great Navy career and journey that began at Annapolis more than 30 years ago. I consider myself to be very fortunate to have served my country in this way.”

Giorgione will officially retire from the Navy July 16, 2010 in a ceremony at Annapolis, Md., the place where he was commissioned as a naval officer 29 years ago.

Submitted by Don Rochon at