Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Mike Gilday, left, administers the Oath of Office to Vice Chief of Naval Operations (VCNO) Adm. Bill Lescher during a promotion ceremony at the Pentagon. Lescher was promoted to admiral before assuming the duties as VCNO.


Adm. William Lescher became the 41st Vice Chief of Naval Operations (VCNO) when he assumed duties from Adm. Robert Burke on Friday, May 29.

“I am grateful for all that Adm. Bob Burke has done for our Navy while serving as Vice Chief and have no doubt he’ll excel in his next assignment as a fleet commander in Europe,” said Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday. “Adm. Bill Lescher brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the job, and I know he’ll do an excellent job as the Navy’s 41st VCNO.”

Burke, who served as VCNO from June 2019 to May 2020, is scheduled to relieve Adm. James Foggo as the Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa.

"It has been a privilege to serve as Vice Chief for the last year, working with some amazing people, all focused on the same goals - keeping America's Navy ready, now and for the future, and taking care of our Sailors.” Said Burke. “The work has been rewarding, but the world keeps making our job harder. That's why I'm glad Admiral Bill Lescher is coming in behind me. He's smart, he's analytical, and he's hard working. Exactly the person the Navy needs as Vice Chief."

Lescher was promoted to the rank of admiral by Gilday prior to the change of office.

"I am honored to assume this responsibility,” Lescher said. “I look forward to continuing to serve Sailors and working with Navy leaders to maximize the readiness and lethality of the Fleet.”

In his previous position, Lescher served as the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations, Integration of Capabilities and Resources (OPNAV N8). He was responsible for the Navy’s centralized capability analysis and assessments, allocation and integration of Navy resources in the Planning, Programming, Budgeting, and Execution System, and determining the resources needed to achieve required readiness levels of Navy operating forces.


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