If the staff of the Naples, Italy-based Submarine Group Eight feels a little déjà vu at Thursday’s change of command ceremony, there’s good reason.
Rear Adm. Steve Stanley is relieving Rear Adm. Kirkland Donald as the group’s commander.
Last June, Donald took over the position from Stanley, who had been serving four months as interim commander until Donald reported.
Stanley spent this past year as deputy director of the Chief of Naval Operations’ Submarine Warfare Division in Washington, D.C.
Donald will be promoted to vice admiral and assume command of the Norfolk, Va.-based U.S. Atlantic Fleet Submarine Force in August.
Submarine Group Eight encompasses: Task Force 69, the U.S. 6th Fleet’s submarine arm; submarines of NATO’s Allied Naval Forces South; the La Maddelena, Italy-based Submarine Squadron 22; and submarine repair and supply ship USS Emory S. Land.
Submarine Group Eight has no permanently assigned submarines but has operational control of U.S. submarines in the 6th Fleet region and NATO submarines in the Mediterranean.