The U.S. Senate has confirmed President Biden’s nomination of NOAA Rear Adm. Nancy Hann to lead NOAA's Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO) and NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the nation’s eight uniformed services.

Hann has served in many operational and management assignments during her NOAA career, most recently as OMAO’s deputy director for operations and deputy director of the NOAA Corps. Hann has served aboard NOAA aircraft as both a pilot and flight meteorologist and has supported a variety of scientific missions and multiple uncrewed aircraft missions as a pilot and project manager. Hann has also served aboard NOAA ships Miller Freeman and Townsend Cromwell, supporting fisheries surveys and oceanographic research in the Pacific.


director of OMAO and the NOAA Corps, Hann will be responsible for NOAA’s fleet of 15 research and survey ships, nine aircraft, and the uncrewed systems operations program, as well as guiding the approximately 330 uniformed officers and 1,000 civilian personnel assigned to OMAO and the NOAA Corps.

“From flying into hurricanes to crewing remote explorations to the deepest depths of the ocean, the NOAA Corps drives NOAA’s science forward,” U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo said in a statement announcing the confirmation. “Rear Admiral Hann’s leadership will continue to advance how we understand our planet through key observational platforms.”

Her previous experience includes serving as associate director at the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, NOAA liaison to the U.S. Pacific Command, executive officer at the NOAA Marine Operations Center-Atlantic, OMAO chief of staff and commanding officer of the NOAA Aircraft Operations Center. She is a certified diver with many scientific and working dives.

“Rear Adm. Hann is a highly qualified and capable leader with an impressive record of achievement,” said Richard Spinrad, NOAA administrator. “She will play a vital role in ensuring the readiness and efficient operation of the NOAA fleet, which is a critical part of the nation’s environmental observation infrastructure.”

“I am grateful for the opportunity to serve and look forward to working with our highly skilled and dedicated workforce to support NOAA’s science, service and stewardship missions,” said Hann. “I would also like to thank my predecessor, Rear Adm. Michael Silah, for his leadership and service to the nation.”

Rear Adm. Hann holds a master’s degree in public administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, a master’s in aeronautical science and space studies from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, and a bachelor’s in marine science and biology from the University of San Diego.