The White House announced Friday its next nominations to lead U.S. naval forces in Asia and the Middle East.

Rear Adm. Fred Kacher, currently the vice director of operations at the Joint Staff, has been tapped to lead the Japan-based 7th Fleet.

He has commanded the guided-missile destroyer Stockdale, Destroyer Squadron 7 and Expeditionary Strike Group 7 in the West Pacific.

Rear Adm. George Wikoff has been nominated to lead the Bahrain-based 5th Fleet.

Wikoff currently serves as the Joint Staff’s vice director.

He is a career aviator who served as a TOPGUN training officer and as leader of Strike Fighter Squadron 211, Carrier Air Wing 3 onboard the aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman, and as commander of Carrier Strike Group 3 onboard the carrier Ronald Reagan.

Both nominations require Senate approval and would see the flag officers promoted to vice admiral.

Correction: an earlier version of this story misstated the warship that Rear Adm. Fred Kacher commanded. He commanded the guided-missile destroyer Stockdale.

Geoff is the editor of Navy Times, but he still loves writing stories. He covered Iraq and Afghanistan extensively and was a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. He welcomes any and all kinds of tips at

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