Capt. David Bretz, previously deputy commodore of the U.S. Navy‘s Destroyer Squadron 31, has officially succeeded Capt. Charles Johnson as DESRON-31 commander during a change-of-command ceremony at Joint Base Pearl-Harbor Hickam.
Johnson, who will move on to report to the commander of U.S. 6th Fleet in Naples, Italy, was awarded the Legion of Merit at the ceremony, the Navy said Friday.
“Capt. Bretz is ready to lead the DESRON-31 team in the face of a rapidly changing maritime security environment,” said Rear Adm. John Fuller, Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific commander.
Bretz has been assigned to USS Arleigh Burke and USS Thorn and served as an engineering officer in USS Mahan, executive officer in USS James E. Williams and commanding officer of USS Whirlwind and USS Jason Dunham.
He was a congressional liaison for the director of surface warfare at the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations and director of the White House liaison office at the Department of the Navy.
Bretz is the recipient of military awards such as the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.