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Commandant of Midshipmen

Colonel James P. McDonough, USMC


89th Commandant of Midshipmen
United States Naval Academy

Colonel “J.P.” McDonough graduated from the United States Naval Academy with a Bachelor of Science in Systems Engineering and was commissioned in May 1994. 

A career artillery officer, Colonel McDonough’s operational assignments include: platoon commander with Battery C, 1st Battalion, 11th Marines; Kilo Battery Commander, 3rd Battalion, 10th Marines in support of Operations Swift and Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan; battalion operations officer, 3rd Battalion, 12th Marine Regiment; officer in charge, Embedded Training Team 6-5, Afghan National Army in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan; regimental executive officer, 12th Marine and 11th Marine Regiments; commander, 1st Battalion, 11th Marines; and most recently as commander, 10th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division.

Colonel McDonough’s staff and joint tours include serving as the executive assistant to the Deputy Commandant, Plans, Policies, and Operations at U.S. Marine Corps Headquarters in the Pentagon; the Joint Staff where he served as an action officer and division chief in the J39, Deputy Directorate for Global Operations; a modeling and simulation analyst for training systems and project officer for multiple simulation programs at USMC Training and Education Command; and staff platoon commander at The Basic School in Quantico, Virginia.

Colonel McDonough assumed his duties as the 89th Commandant of Midshipmen at the U.S. Naval Academy in June 2021.

His decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal, and various unit and service awards. He earned a master’s degree in modeling, virtual environments, and simulation from the Naval Postgraduate School in 2005, and graduated with distinction from the Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy at National Defense University in 2014.

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