Rear Admiral Noel G. Preston graduated from the University of South Carolina Navy ROTC program in 1970 and attended the Naval Justice School in Newport, R.I. He reported to Naval Air Station Pensacola and was designated a Naval Aviator in October 1971.
Rear Adm. Preston’s early assignments include Naval Air Facility Sigonella, Sicily; overseas deployments with Helicopter Combat Support Squadron (HC) 6; and HC-16.
Rear Adm. Preston affiliated with the Navy Reserve (NR) in 1979. He commanded Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron (HS) 1535, HS-75, Voluntary Training Unit 0881, NR Advanced Base Functional Component, Fleet Modernization Program, Mobile Maintenance Facility-A, and NR U.S. Naval Forces Central 108.
Other assignments include: Commander, Navy Region Europe; Director, Navy Europe Programs, Resources and Support; Commander, Fleet Air Keflavik; Deputy Director of Navy Reserve (CNO); Head, Aircraft Carriers Programs Branch (CNO); Special Assistant for Financial Management to Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command; Navy Command Leadership School Instructor; Assistant Chief of Staff, Operations/Training in NR U.S. Navy Commander 7th Fleet, 111; and member of the Secretary of the Navy’s National Navy Reserve Policy Board.
Rear Adm. Preston’s joint assignments include: Commander, Maritime Air Naples; Commander, Iceland Defense Force; Commander, Island Command Iceland; Chief of Staff, Joint Command Lisbon; two tours as Deputy Commander, Joint Task Force Southwest Asia (Operations Southern Watch); Navy Special Assistant to the Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR)/CINCEUR; Deputy Director (Reserve), Plans and Policy, U.S. Central Command; Deputy Director (Reserve), Operations, U.S. Central Command for Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.
Rear Adm. Preston reported to the Office of the Chief of Navy Reserve in July 2007.
Rear Adm. Preston’s personal decorations include the Legion of Merit (four awards), the Bronze Star, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), and the Meritorious Service Medal (three awards). He earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of South Carolina and his Masters of Business Administration in Accounting from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School.