Rear Adm. McGrath is currently assigned as commander, Strike Force Training Pacific and deputy commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet. He is a 1979 graduate of the U. S. Naval Academy, and a native of New York City.
McGrath was designated as a naval aviator in 1981, reporting to the Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron (Light) (HSL) 35. While at HSL-35, he deployed to the Indian Ocean and Western Pacific aboard USS Fanning (FF 1076), USS Reasoner (FF 1063), and USS Harry W. Hill (DD 986).
McGrath completed tours as a flight instructor in HSL-41, and then an officer-in-charge in HSL-45, completing a deployment to the Persian Gulf aboard USS Kinkaid (DD 965). During this tour, McGrath pursued his studies at the University of San Diego School of Law and completed his Juris Doctorate in Law in 1991. He left active duty in August 1990 and was commissioned in the Navy Reserve.
McGrath held numerous billets at HSL-84 before assuming command. He subsequently commanded the Reserve units for Carrier Southwest, Carrier Group One, and Commander Naval Air Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet. He also served on the staff of Commander, 3rd Fleet; as deputy commander, Readiness Command Southwest and deputy commander, Navy Region Southwest; and most recently, as commander, Naval Air Forces Reserve and vice commander, Naval Air Forces. He also was responsible for the Centennial of Naval Aviation celebration.