NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- U.S. Fleet Forces held a change of office ceremony in Norfolk, Aug. 24.
Vice Adm. Michelle Howard relieved Vice Adm. David H. Buss as deputy commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command and commander, Task Force 20 (CTF 20), as well as director, Combined Joint Operations from the Sea Centre of Excellence.
Buss, who departs to become commander, U.S. Naval Air Forces, in San Diego, assumed duties as deputy commander in June 2011. He assumed duties as CTF 20 when U.S. 2nd Fleet was disestablished and its activities merged into U.S. Fleet Forces Command in September 2011.
"I cannot fully express how honored I am to have led the tremendous Sailors of Task Force 20 for the past year. Their service and sacrifice, to include that of their families, in support of our Navy and nation was awe inspiring," said Buss.
He also expressed that he will miss having the opportunity to meet with Sailors down on their deck-plates and ensuring they have what they need to help prepare them to execute naval missions forward.
"Leading them, has truly been one the highest privileges of my entire 34 year career," he added. "I am heartened to know that Vice Admiral Michelle Howard brings her superb leadership to this team and I am certain that she will lead them to many successes ahead."
Howard thanked Buss for the great team he has left her and said she looks forward to working with the U.S. Fleet Forces team and other commands across the Hampton Roads area to ensure all Sailors, Marines and Navy civilians have the resources and training to execute CTF 20 missions.
"I am deeply humbled to lead the exceptional people of Task Force 20," said Howard. "Vice Admiral Dave Buss has left me a great team. I admire their achievements of the past few years, and fully intend that we will be a sharp and ready cutlass should our nation need to draw her sword."
Howard was promoted to her current rank in a separate ceremony held at U.S. Fleet Forces Aug. 24.
For more information, visit www.navy.mil, www.facebook.com/usnavy, or www.twitter.com/usnavy.
For more news from U.S. Fleet Forces Command, visit www.navy.mil/local/clf/.