Vice Adm. Charles L. Munns began his naval career at the U.S. Naval Academy, graduating with distinction in 1973 with a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Physics. Munns received a Master of Science in Computer Science from the University of Colorado in December 1980 and attended MIT's Seminar XXI on Foreign Politics and International Relations from September 1993 to June 1994.
Early tours included assignments as division officer, USS Seadragon (SSN-584) from November 1974 to May 1978; instructor, Naval ROTC Unit University of Colorado from August 1978 to December 1980; engineer, USS Ethan Allen (SSN-608) from August 1981 to March 1983; navigator, USS New York City (SSN-696) from May 1983 to October 1984; executive officer, USS Florida (SSBN-728) (Blue) from January 1985 to January 1987; and executive assistant to the deputy chief of staff, Commander In Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet from February 1987 to March 1989.
Munns' first command assignment was as commanding officer of USS Richard B. Russell (SSN-687) from April 1990 to October 1992. During his command, the ship was awarded a Presidential Unit Citation, two Navy Unit Commendations and three consecutive Battle "E" Awards. Following this tour, Munns completed a Pentagon tour from November 1992 to July 1994 with assignments on the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations staff working for the deputy chief of naval operations for plans, policy and operations (N3/N5) first in the Strategic Concepts Branch (N513), then as the branch head Nuclear Affairs and International Negotiations Branch (N514) and lastly for the Strategy and Policy Division (N51).
Munns was then assigned to major command as commander, Submarine Development Squadron 12 from July 1994 to August 1995 and was responsible for the operations, maintenance and training of eight nuclear submarines and for tactical development for the submarine force. In September 1995, he was selected as a Chief of Naval Operations Strategic Studies Group fellow. His nine-month tasking was to create innovative operational concepts for naval operations in 2025 and beyond. From this post at the Naval War College, he was detailed to serve from July 1996 to May 1998 as chief of staff, Commander Submarine Force U.S. Pacific Fleet.
Munns' first flag officer tour was as deputy chief of staff for C4I, resources, requirements, and assessments (N6N8) on the staff of the Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet, from April 1998 through May 2000, where he acted as the Pacific Fleet chief information officer and chief financial officer. In June 2000, Munns was named commander, Submarine Group 8; commander Submarines, Allied Naval Forces South; commander, Submarine Force, U.S. 6th Fleet (CTF 69); and commander, Fleet Ballistic Missile Submarine Force (CTF 164), based in Naples, Italy. In April 2002, he was selected as the director, Navy Marine Corps Intranet, where he was responsible for the Department of the Navy’s initiative to provide secure intranet infrastructure and services to the shore based components of the Navy and Marine Corps. His final assignment from October 2004 to March 2007 was as commander Submarine Forces, commander U.S. Atlantic Submarine Force and commander NATO Submarines. In this assignment, he was responsible for the entire U.S. Submarine Enterprise. Munns retired from naval service in April 2007.
His personal decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal (two awards), Legion of Merit (five awards), Meritorious Service Medal (two awards), Navy Commendation Medal (three awards), and the Navy Achievement Medal.