What Are the Different Ranks in the U.S. Navy?


Quick Answer

Including special ranks, there are 26 different ranks in the US Navy, ranging from Seaman Recruit to the Fleet Admiral, which is reserved only for wartime. 11 of these ranks are officer ranks, and out of those, five are admiral ranks.

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What Are the Different Ranks in the U.S. Navy?
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Full Answer

From lowest to highest, the ranks of the Navy are as follows: Seaman Recruit, Seaman Apprentice, Seaman, Petty Officers 3rd through 1st class, Chief Petty Officer, Senior Chief Petty Officer, Master Chief Petty Officer, Fleet Master Chief Petty Officer, Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, Chief Warrant Officers 2 through 5, Ensign, Lieutenant Junior Grade, Lieutenant, Lieutenant Commander, Commander, Captain, Rear Admirals Lower and Upper Halves, Vice Admiral, Admiral Chief of Naval Ops and Fleet Admiral.

The highest rank in the US Navy is the Fleet Admiral. Because the rank is reserved only for wartime, there have only been four Fleet Admirals in history: William Leahy, Ernest King, Chester Nimitz and William Halsey Jr.

Those of officer rank are not enlisted, but serve at the desire of the President of the United States, and are promoted by the Senate. Officers are required to have significant technical and leadership experience, and are given leadership responsibilities over their fellow servicemen.

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