Rear Adm. John T. Palmer is a native of Lexington, Kentucky, and a 1988 graduate of The Citadel with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He is also a graduate of the Naval Postgraduate School with a Master of Science in Systems Management (Acquisition and Contract Management) and the Columbia University Graduate School of Business Senior Executive Program.
His command shore assignments include commanding officer, Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Fleet Logistics Center San Diego; commander, Defense Distribution Mapping Activity (DDMA); and commander, Defense Distribution Depot Richmond, Virginia (DDRV). Operational assignments include supply officer, USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75); principal assistant for logistics, USS George Washington (CVN 73); supply officer, USS Boone (FFG 28); and material division officer and aviation support division officer, USS Guam (LPH 9).
Other tours ashore include assistant commander, Supply Operations & Logistics Policy (N3/4) and executive assistant to Commander, NAVSUP; director of supply corps personnel, Navy Personnel Command (NPC); deputy assistant commander for contracts, deputy department head for contracts in support of PEO (W) (Cruise Missiles & Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) and AIR 1.0 (Multi-Mission Aircraft & Multi-Mission Platform Equipment, Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR); procurement branch chief, Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) Aviation (formerly Defense Supply Center Richmond); and instructor of supply management and joint aviation supply & maintenance material management, Navy Supply Corps School.
Palmer assumed command, as Defense Logistics Agency Land & Maritime commander Columbus, Ohio, June 27, 2018, after a tour at U.S. Pacific Fleet, where he served as director, Logistics, Fleet Supply and Ordnance.
As DLA Land & Maritime commander, he oversees the end-to-end integration of the DLA Land and maritime supply chains delivering repair parts to all military services. He directs the efforts of more than 2,500 associates at 37 locations worldwide, to include three DLA depot level repairable detachments and four detachments supporting U.S. Naval Shipyards. DLA Land and Maritime’s core functions include purchasing materiel, monitoring inventory levels, maintaining technical data, and assuring quality conformance of approximately two million spare and repair parts utilized by more than 19,000 military units and federal and civilian agencies. In 2017, DLA Land and Maritime’s sales exceeded $3 billion..
Palmer’s qualifications include naval aviation supply officer, Surface Warfare Supply Corps officer, Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act (DAWIA) Level III (Contracting), joint qualified officer and membership in the Defense Acquisition Corps. He is recognized by the National Contract Management Association as a Certified Professional Contracts Manager (CPCM). He is entitled to wear the Legion of Merit, along with various other personal, unit and service awards.