Carlos Del Toro, Secretary of the Navy

Carlos Del Toro

Secretary of the Navy

Carlos Del Toro was born in 1961 in Havana, Cuba. He immigrated to the United States with his parents as a child and grew up in Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan. He earned an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from the United States Naval Academy. He would later earn an M.A. in national security studies from the Naval War College and an M.P.S. in legislative affairs from George Washington University. 

He served 22 years in the United States Navy, retiring with the rank of commander. He served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense and was a special assistant to the director and deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget. He was the commanding officer of the USS Bulkeley, a destroyer. 

After retiring from the Navy, he founded a company that dealt with management and engineering, primarily working with government clients. 

Del Toro was nominated by President Joe Biden to be Secretary of the Navy. He was confirmed by a voice vote of the Senate and assumed office in August 2021. 

He is married to Betty and they have four children. 

In the News…

As Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro has come to the Pentagon, the Navy is looking to develop a long-term strategic plan that keeps pace with China’s increasingly sophisticated naval technologies. 

According to the Heritage Foundation’s 2022 Index of Military Strength, the Navy’s ability to defend the nation’s security interests is “marginal,” with the caveat that its score is trending to “weak” in capability and readiness, while the Marine Corps’ ability is graded as “strong.” 

“Marginal” in the index’s ranking is the middle grade on its five-step scale, according to Heritage’s editor for the project and a retired Marine. Explaining “marginal” as a grade, he said in terms of capacity it comes down to being “not big enough or equipment [being] too old.” 

Looking at the Navy, author Brent Sadler found the “battle force fleet of 297 ships and intensified operational tempo combine to reveal a Navy that is much too small relative to its task.” The report also noted the fleet is continuing to age, requiring more maintenance and time off station. 


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