U.S. Navy Ranks: Everything you must know about the U.S. Navy Ranks 2023
The U.S. Navy , founded in October 1775 and established in 1798, is known as one of the most powerful and elite military forces in the world. Its responsibilities are supporting seaborne forces in combat naval operations, maintaining sea security, and protecting the country’s borders. Now, there are nearly 341,000 sailors serving in the U.S. Navy. In this paper, we will dig deep into the U.S. Navy ranks. Keep reading till the end to grasp an overview of the different Navy ranks. Let’s get started.
1. How are the U.S. Navy’s ranks classified?
First of all, we will walk through the classifications of the U.S. Navy Ranks to assist you in becoming acquainted with them before proceeding with the next part.
1.1. Junior enlisted
53% of the junior enlisted personnel are junior enlisted troops, which get the lowest pay of all military officers with pay grades from E-1 to E-4. Junior enlisted personnel will be supervised by the senior enlisted people.
1.2. Non-commissioned officers (NCOs)
Typically, non-commissioned officers may serve as petty officers and corporals after they undergo advanced military training. The duties of non-commissioned officers consist of supervising, teaching ceremonies, training, and drill procedures for the leaders of cadet companies at the U.S. military academy.
1.3. Senior non-commissioned officer
Senior noncommissioned officers are all the chief petty officers who have a pay grade of E-8 to E-9. Moreover, senior non-commissioned officers play an important role in the front-line defense for the country. Furthermore, some of them are former drill sergeants, while others serve as senior enlisted advisors or staff NCOs.
1.4. Senior enlisted advisor
Senior enlisted advisors, E-9s, serve as commanding officers from headquarters and battalions. “Navy Master Chief Petty Officer” is the appropriate title for this commanding officer in the Navy.
1.5. Warrant officers
Warrant officers who have pay grades in the Navy from W-2 to W-5 not only play an important role in supporting communications with the chain of command but also provide managerial and technical skills.
1.6. Junior officers
In the U.S. Navy, Junior officers are commissioned naval officers who hold ranks equal to those of an army captain, naval lieutenant, or flight lieutenant.
1.7. Senior officers
Captains and commanders are senior officers. They could be in charge of a shore installation, small amphibious ships, frigate, destroyer, fast-attack submarine, or aviation squadron.
1.8. Flag officers
Flag officers refer to those who reached the ranks of rear admiral lower half, rear admiral, vice admiral, and admiral. Furthermore, you might find this term more common in the rank structure of the Navy and Coast Guard.
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2. The Ultimate List of the United States Navy Ranks
Below is a list of officer-level ranks in the U.S. Navy military forces. It should be noted that every position’s basic pay is expected to advance in rank, and it continually increases till they reach their maximum number of years.
2.1. Seaman recruit
The lowest of all the enlisted ranks in the U.S. Navy is Seaman Recruits, whose classification is Junior Enlisted. Currently, Seaman Recruit or the entry-level rank has no rank insignia. Besides, their pay grade is E-1 and monthly pay that they might receive is $1833
2.2. Seaman apprentice
The second lowest rank in the U.S. Navy rank is Seaman Apprentice, who mostly spend time studying and doing menial service labor. They might advance to a Seaman after finishing basic training. Their classification is Junior Enlisted and their pay grade is E-2 which is equivalent to $2,055 per month.
Seaman fleet E-3s, whose classification is Junior Enlisted, have earned the minimum qualifications and familiarized with the fleet compared to their inferiors. Besides, Seamans play a significant role in watchstanding and maintenance. Furthermore, they might also prepare for getting promoted to the next rank of petty officer by taking indoctrination courses and studying for first-rate examinations. Their monthly pay for the pay grade of E-3 is $2,160.60.
2.4. Petty officer third class
Normally, almost all third-class petty officers whose classification is Non-commissioned Officer have boarded in the fleet , apart from those exceptionally promoted while still in school or before graduation. Furthermore, they are known as accountable leaders who are responsible for repairs and maintenance of their division’s equipment. The monthly pay of a Petty Officer Third Class might be $2,393.40 for an E-4. They might attend an advanced school to get a higher rank and a well-paid salary.
2.5. Petty officer second class
Second-class petty officers or mid-grade petty officers, whose classification is Noncommissioned Officer, are assessed as the most qualified in their in-rate watch stations. They can repair and maintain their Division’s equipment. Additionally, they are responsible for guiding the junior petty officers & Seamen and complementing daily tasks if their superiors are absent. It is highly recommended that they attend more advanced “C schools” to begin supervisory qualifications. Monthly, they will earn $2,610.30 for their E-5 pay grade.
2.6. Petty officer first class
E-6 petty officer first class, whose classification is Noncommissioned officer, are known as the Division’s leaders. Moreover, they typically have responsibility for the most complex and challenging tasks, daily business activities, guiding junior petty officers, and sharing primary Collateral Duties. Their monthly basic salary is $2,849.40
2.7. Chief petty officer
E-7 Chiefs Petty Officers, who have the technical expertise and lead the sailors at their own rate, are the true leaders of the Navy. They wear the same khaki uniforms and receive the utmost respect. These officers constantly make sure that their sailors are developing professionally and are in good physical and emotional health. Their monthly basic pay is $3,294.30 for the classification of Senior Noncommissioned Officer
2.8. Senior chief petty officer
E-8 Senior Chiefs Petty Officers, who are experienced compared to other chiefs, usually work as department chiefs with department heads for engineering, supply, combat systems, and more. Furthermore, they are mainly responsible for training incoming chiefs. Their monthly basic pay is $4,739.10 for the classification of Senior Noncommissioned Officer
2.9. Master chief petty officer
E-9 Master chiefs, whose classification is Senior noncommissioned officer, are the most experienced of all chiefs. They may work as Department Chiefs and have the biggest influence on communication, unity, and smooth flow of operations in the Chief’s Mess. These officers normally receive a pay of $5,789.10 per month.
2.10. Command master chief petty officer
E-9 Command master chiefs (CMCs), whose classification is senior enlisted advisor, are the sole leading chiefs of ships and shore-based units. Furthermore, command master chiefs are called the “chief of the boat” on submarines. CMCs share the same pay as master chief petty officers and are senior enlisted leaders directly reporting to their commanding officers – $5,789.10. These officers play an important role in implementing and formulating policies regarding welfare, morale, discipline, and training of enlisted Navy personnel.
2. 11. Master chief petty officer of the Navy
The Master chief petty officer of the Navy, also known as also the main enlisted advisor of the Chief of Naval Operations’ (CNO) is the Division’s senior enlisted personnel. Their classification is Senior enlisted advisor.
The Master chief petty officers are appointed as spokesmen to tackle the issues in the highest positions of the Navy. Furthermore, their duties might vary from time to time because they mostly travel through the Navy to train, observe, and seek the opinions of sailors and their families. Their monthly basic pay is $5,789.10
2. 12. Chief warrant officer 2
W-2 Chief warrant officers, whose classification Warrant officer is have warfare or technical expertise beyond the chief petty officer ranks. Additionally, they hold positions crucial for the efficient operation of the Navy. It is $3,872.10 per month for their base salary.
2.13. Chief warrant officer 3
W-3 Chief warrant officer 3, who belongs to the Warrant officer classification, has the same duties as Chief warrant officer 4 and is employed in a position equivalent to that of a division officer. The learning curve for this rank is insufficient to become a command officer because the duties of a command officer are specialized. Their base salary is $4,376.40 per month.
2.14. Chief warrant officer 4
The fourth and highest billeted warrant officer is chief warrant officer 4. They hold various positions to maintain the smooth operations of the Navy in their capacity as technical specialists with authority in their fields of specialization. Their pay scale begins at W-2 and rises with time and performance.
2.15. Chief warrant officer 5
Chief warrant officers, who fall under the category of Warrant Officer, are experts in both warfare and technology and hold positions that are comparable to those of division officers. Of all warrant officers, they have the most knowledge and expertise. Their base salary is $8,520.30 per month.
Ensigns, whose classification is Junior officer, normally spend two years before receiving a promotion to lieutenant junior grade (LTJG). Fleet ensigns must work hard to gain the respect of their crew when they first join the unit. The amount of time they spend in training can range from a few weeks (for surface warfare officers) to two years (for pilots, SEALs, and submariners). Additionally, they oversee seaman crews in divisions like administration and engineering while working as division officers on naval ships. Their base salary is $3,477.30 per month.
2.17. Lieutenant junior grade
A lieutenant junior grade (LTJG), whose classification is Junior Officer, is the second lowest officer rank. Before being promoted to the rank of full lieutenant, officers in this rank must wait two years. After they become ensigns, they have been serving in the fleet for a number of months, and because of this, higher standards are placed on them. Additionally, it implies that they have greater responsibilities, including taking on more side jobs. Their base salary is $4,006.50 per month.
2. 18. Lieutenant
Lieutenants, who fall under the category of Junior Officers, are expected to be fully prepared for combat and to exhibit strong leadership abilities because they are in charge of handling casualties. They are responsible for tactical watch teams. They provide guidance to junior officers and oversee the crew members’ instruction. They make emergency decisions while aboard a ship without the assistance of the command officer, such as launching ships from the dock in the event of a threatening storm. Their base salary is $4,636.50per month.
2.19. Lieutenant commander
It is important to note that Lieutenant Commanders, whose classification is Junior Officer, are referred to as “Lieutenant Commander” and not as “Commander” or “Lieutenant.” They are in charge of minesweepers and other smaller ships, among other duties. They could be the executive officer or the department head on larger ships like destroyers. They are the future command officers and receive due respect from their crew. Their base salary is $5,273.70 per month.
Navy ships like destroyers, frigates, and submarines are typically commanded by commanders, who fall under the Senior Officer classification. They assist senior officers on board big naval ships and command aircraft squadrons and small shore missions. To this position, lieutenant commanders are promoted. Their base salary is $6,112.20 per month.
The acting commanding officer of major commands, such as amphibious assault ships, aircraft carriers, cruisers, carrier air wings, destroyer squadrons, SEAL groups, and other significant shore installations, is a captain, whose classification is Senior officer. Additionally, they are the senior-level officers in charge of planning and leading lower-ranking officers and enlisted personnel during sea-based missions in the majority of militaries around the world. Their monthly base pay is $7,332.00.
2.22. Rear admiral lower half
Flag officers with the title “rear admiral” are in charge of managing ship groups at sea. For example, the carrier strike group’s commanders station on an aircraft carrier. They can coordinate all actions and plans by speaking with the captains of each ship in the fleet. The lower half of the rear admiral can fly the pennant over any base or ship he serves because they are flag officers. Their monthly salary is $9,668.40.
2.23. Rear admiral upper half
Rear admirals, also referred to as the rear admiral upper half, are in charge of the management of fleets of ships. They typically command Navy ship fleets, air wings, and submarines. The eligible candidates for promotion to this position are senior naval officers. Their classification is Flag Officer. Their compensation is $11,635.50 per month.
2.24. Vice admiral
Flag officers with the rank of vice admiral oversee the Navy’s highest commands or serve as their deputies in geographic or combatant commands. They are commissioned officers in the Navy with a rank higher than a rear admiral and a three-star insignia. Their basic salary is $16,444.80
The highest major combatant, geographic, or Navy commands are held by admirals, who are classified as flag officers. The highest rank attainable in the U.S. Navy is held by these four-star flag officers. Their starting monthly salary is $16,974.90 with a pay-grade of O-10
2.26. Fleet admiral
The highest rank in the Navy is fleet admiral, who holds the title of Flag officer and wears a five-star insignia. During times of war, the rank is only momentarily employed. There hasn’t been an active fleet admiral since Bull Halsey served as the U.S. Navy’s fleet admiral during World War II in 1945. Their monthly salary is $16,974.90.
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In conclusion, this paper provides you with a brief overview of the U.S. Navy ranks. Follow our platform to see more informative articles and don’t forget to take our ASVAB Practice Questions to prepare for your entrance military exam.