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Trident Scholar Program
Picture Name

Rear Admiral Paul J. Ryan, USN (Ret.)

Commander, Mine Warfare Command


Dedication and perseverance are Paul’s passwords. Whether crouched over a book, tenaciously tugging at a starboard oar, or out on the prowl for some delightful young lovely, Paul provides a purpose for his own life and lends an always willing hand to others.

Paul’s Trident Scholar research was titled, “Designing the Future: An Appraisal and Critique of Futurism with Special Emphasis on its Use by the Navy."


...& Now

Rear Admiral Ryan was Raised in Yonkers, N.Y. and entered the United States Naval Academy in 1969. He graduated with distinction in 1973 and was awarded a Navy Burke Scholarship.

After initial nuclear power training, Rear Admiral Ryan reported to USS Sam Rayburn (SSBN 635) (GOLD), where he served three years in various engineering billets. Assigned to the Naval Postgraduate School in 1977, he combined the curriculum at graduate school with the Defense Language Institute Russian Language Program, graduating with a Master of Arts Degree in National Security Affairs (Europe/USSR) and a Russian Language Diploma (with honors).

From 1979 to 1982 Rear Admiral Ryan served as Engineer in USS Tullibee (SSN 579). After attending the Submarine Officer Advanced Course, he served as Navigator and Operations Officer in USS Groton (SSN 694), and as Executive Officer, USS Boston (SSN 703). From 1986 to 1988 he was the Military Assistant to the Principal Deputy and Acting Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Engineering, and Systems).

Rear Admiral Ryan commanded USS Philadelphia (SSN 690) from 1989 to 1992, completing three major deployments, including participation in Operation Desert Storm. During his command tour USS Philadelphia was awarded two Meritorious Unit Commendations, the Battle Efficiency “E”, the CINCLANTFLT Golden Anchor Award, and two Silver Anchor Awards.

Rear Admiral Ryan served as a Branch Chief in the Division of Naval Warfare (OP-701) and the Navy Reorganization Transition Team (N83) before reporting to the Joint Staff (J-5) in November 1992. On the Joint Staff he served as the Central and East European Branch Chief and European Division Chief, with major emphasis on events in the former Yugoslavia and NATO. After completing his tour on the Joint Staff, Rear Admiral Ryan attended the Harvard University Executive Program for Senior Officials in National Security.

Rear Admiral Ryan commanded USS L. Y. Spear (AS 36) from July 1995 to May 1996. He was then assigned to the Navy staff as the Director, Operational Support Division (N23), and subsequently selected as the Deputy Director of the navy Quadrennial Defense Review Office (N8C). In July 1997 he was assigned as Strategic Submarine and Maintenance Branch Chief, Submarine Warfare Division (N871). In July 1998 he reported as the Senior Navy Fellow on the Secretary of Defense Strategic Studies Group and from June 1999 to July 2000 he served as Assistant to the Chief of Naval Operations for Long-range Planning (n09V). In August 2000, Rear Admiral Ryan assumed his first flag assignment as Director, Warfare Programs and REadiness (N8) on the staff of the Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet. In February 2002, he took over as Commander, Mine Warfare Command, Corpus Christi, Texas.

Rear Admiral Ryan’s awards include: the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit with three gold Stars, Meritorious Service Medal with four Gold Stars, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy Commendation Medal with one Gold Star, and the Navy Achievement Medal.

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