U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command welcomes new commander

Rear Adm. Mark H. Buzby became the 25th commander of the U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command today. The global command, headquartered in Washington, D.C., is the ocean transportation provider for the Department of Defense – responsible for the operation of more than 110 civilian-crewed, noncombatant ships, which support military and humanitarian missions worldwide.

Buzby, a 30-year Navy veteran, assumed command during a ceremony aboard Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort in Baltimore. The 894-foot ship, renowned for its humanitarian and civic assistance deployments to South and Central America in recent years, represents just one of MSC’s unique ships and diverse missions.

Buzby, a native of Atlantic City, N.J., graduated from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, N.Y., and was commissioned in 1979.

As the new commander of MSC, Buzby will be responsible for a fleet of government-owned and chartered ships, as well as a workforce of more than 9,000 civilian and military personnel operating at sea and ashore worldwide.

“I am incredibly humbled and proud beyond words to be selected to lead this important command in executing the most vital mission in the Global War on Terrorism today – sustaining our warfighters forward,” said Buzby in his remarks to more than 400 ceremony guests.

MSC conducts a wide variety of seagoing missions in support of the U.S. armed forces. The command’s ships deliver critical supplies to U.S. Navy ships underway; conduct specialized missions such as charting ocean bottoms and conducting undersea surveillance; strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world for rapid delivery ashore for combat operations or disaster relief; and transport military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.

In the last three years, MSC ships have delivered 9 million gallons of fuel and nearly 7,000 tons of supplies and combat power to U.S. warfighters worldwide; deployed on five humanitarian and civic assistance missions treating more than 370,000 patients in 25 countries; evacuated 6,700 U.S. citizens from Beirut to safety in 2006; conducted annual resupply missions to Antarctica and Greenland; assisted in the search for missing service members in the waters off of Vietnam; and conducted a broad range of other missions.

Buzby comes to MSC from U.S. Fleet Forces Command in Norfolk, Va., where he was deputy chief of staff for global force management and joint operations.

Earlier in Buzby’s career, he served in a diverse array of assignments at sea and ashore. Buzby’s previous commands include destroyer USS Carney, Destroyer Squadron 31, Surface Warfare Officers School Command, and Joint Task Force Guantanamo.
As a flag officer, Buzby served on the Navy Staff as deputy for surface ships, deputy for surface warfare and deputy for expeditionary warfare.

Buzby holds master’s degrees from the U.S. Naval War College in Strategic Studies and International Relations and from Salve Regina University in International Relations. Buzby is also a graduate of the Joint Forces Staff College.

Buzby relieved Rear Adm. Robert D. Reilly, Jr., who served as the commander of MSC since March 2006 and will retire after 34 years of distinguished Naval service.

A biography and a downloadable high resolution photo of Rear Adm. Mark H. Buzby are available: here.

By Professional Mariner Staff