A native of Denver, Colo., Vice Adm. (ret) Route graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1971, and subsequently completed a series of command and leadership assignments both within the Navy and in the Joint Service arena. He commanded USS Dewey (DDG 45), USS Lake Erie (CG 70), Cruiser Destroyer Group 2 and the George Washington (CVN 73) Battle Group. In addition to his afloat commands, he served at sea with Cruiser Destroyer Group 2 and Destroyer Squadron 4, and in USS Halsey (CG 23), USS Roark (FF 1053), USS Wainwright (CG 28), and USS Barry (DD 933).
Ashore, he commanded the Navy Warfare Development Command (NWDC) and the Naval War College. He was the 50th officer to serve as President of the college since it was founded in 1884. His other flag assignments include two tours on the Chief of Naval Operations staff, first as Director, Politico-Military Affairs Division (N52) and later as Director, Navy Programming Division (N80) where he developed and prioritized a multi-year spending plan for the Navy’s $80-100 billion annual budget.
In August 2004 Vice Adm. Route began his final assignment as the Naval Inspector General.
Route’s Pentagon assignments have also included Executive Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Manpower and Reserve Affairs) for three Assistant Secretaries in two administrations, Long Range Planner and Surface Ship Readiness analyst in the Chief of Naval Operations’ Program Resource Appraisal Division, and Naval Warfare Analyst in the Joint Analysis Directorate, within the Organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Vice Adm. Route holds a Bachelor of Science in Systems Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy, and a Master of Science in Operations Research from the Naval Postgraduate School. Selected for a Navy Federal Executive Fellowship in 1996, he completed a year-long assignment as a Military Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York City and subsequently was invited to become a Council member in June 1998.
His personal decorations include: the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit (six awards), the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal (four awards), the Navy Commendation Medal (three awards), and the Navy Achievement Medal.