1 LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

(CNN) -- The U.S. Navy has promoted Vice Adm. Michelle Howard to admiral, making her the first female four-star officer in the Navy's 236-year-history, the White House said Tuesday.

Howard, who was the first African-American woman to command a Navy ship, will become deputy chief of naval operations, plans and strategy, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said.

"Her historic career is taking a next step today," Earnest said.

Howard's promotion comes nearly six years after Army Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody became the U.S. military's first female four-star officer.

Howard, a 1982 graduate of the Naval Academy, made history when she commanded the amphibious dock landing ship Rushmore in 1999, Earnest said.

RELATED

More on Michelle Howard

New class at Naval Academy

Multinational exercises to start of Hawaii

Navy orders 10 more submarines

Navy turns seawater into fuel

1 LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE
Read or Share this story: http://on.wtsp.com/1lQIV7N