Michelle Howard Becomes 1st Female 4-Star Officer in the Navy

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Adm. Michelle Janine Howard became the first female four-star officer in the history of the U.S. Navy, according to a press release.

Howard, who was promoted at the Women in Military Service for America Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, is expected to relieve Adm. Mark Ferguson II as the 38th vice chief of naval operations today as well. The promotion also makes her the first African-American female officer to achieve four-star ranking in the history of the military.

"Michelle Howard's promotion to the rank of admiral is the result of a brilliant naval career, one I fully expect to continue when she assumes her new role as vice chief of naval operations, but also it is an historic first, an event to be celebrated as she becomes the first female to achieve this position," Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, who presided over the ceremony and administered the oath of office, said, according to the release. Read more here.