Navy Flag Officer Biography

Vice Admiral Donald C. Arthur

Medical Corps, U.S. Navy
Surgeon General
Chief, Bureau of Medicine and Surgery

Vice Admiral Donald C. Arthur

Vice Admiral Donald C. Arthur, a native of Northampton, Mass., entered naval service in 1974 and attained his Doctor of Medicine from the College of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. After a surgical internship, he completed Navy training in Flight Surgery and Undersea Medicine.

His additional operational qualifications include Surface Warfare Medical Department Officer, Saturation Diving Medical Officer, Hyperbaric (Recompression) Facility Operator, Radiation Health Officer, Navy-Marine Corps Parachutist & Jumpmaster, and he is qualified in submarines.

Vice Adm. Arthur’s early naval service includes research in mixed gas saturation diving and cold weather medicine. He served in the Philippines as both a Flight Surgeon and Diving Medical Officer followed by duty as Senior Medical Officer in USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63). He completed his residency in emergency medicine and served as Head of Emergency Medicine at Naval Hospital San Diego. At the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute, he was Head of the Special Products Division. Following deployment to Southwest Asia with the Marine Corps Second Medical Battalion during Operations Desert Shield/Storm, he served as Director of Medical Programs for the U.S. Marine Corps at Marine Corps Headquarters, Washington, D.C. He then served as Deputy Commander (Chief Operating Officer) of Naval Medical Center, San Diego and, subsequently, as Commanding Officer (Chief Executive Officer) of Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune, N.C.

In 1998, Vice Adm. Arthur returned to Washington, D.C. to serve as Assistant Chief for Health Care Operations, Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery. He held the positions of Deputy Surgeon General, Vice Chief (Chief Operating Officer) of the Navy's Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, and Chief of the Navy Medical Corps before assuming command of the National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Md., in 2002. Vice Adm. Arthur attained board certification in Emergency Medicine and Preventive Medicine (Aerospace).

He is a Fellow and Past President of the Aerospace Medical Association and was President of the Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S. in 2005. He is a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society. He was also the 2002 recipient of the American College of Healthcare Executives' Federal Excellence in Healthcare Leadership Award and 2002 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S. Outstanding Federal Healthcare Executive Award.

Vice Adm. Arthur has been awarded the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, four Legions of Merit, three Meritorious Service Medals, three Navy Commendation Medals, and a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal in addition to unit, service, and campaign awards.

Updated: 30 July 2007