Robert Peter "Rob" Bauer (born 11 November 1962) is a lieutenant admiral in the Royal Netherlands Navy serving as Chief of Defence (Dutch: Commandant der Strijdkrachten) since 5 October 2017.[1] He was Vice Chief of Defence of the Armed forces of the Netherlands from 1 September 2015 until 13 July 2017.[2] After the resignation of Tom Middendorp, he became Chief of Defence.

Rob Bauer
Rob Bauer.jpg
Bauer in 2017
Birth nameRobert Peter Bauer
Born (1962-11-11) 11 November 1962 (age 57)
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Allegiance Netherlands
Service/branchRoyal Netherlands Navy
Years of service1981–present
RankNl-marine-vloot-luitenant admiraal.svg Lieutenant admiral
Commands heldChief of Defense
Vice Chief of Defence
HNLMS Johan de Witt
HNLMS De Ruyter


He entered the Royal Netherlands Navy through the Royal Naval College (Netherlands) in 1981 until commissioned as a naval commander in 1984. He also completed the Advanced Staff Course in 1998.

He commanded the HNLMS De Ruyter (F804) in 2005-2007, his command also includes the operational deployment in the Mediterranean with the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 as part of the NATO Response Force (Operation Active Endeavour). He was deployed in Bahrain in 2006 as the Deputy Commander of Task Force 150 in the Operation Enduring Freedom. He also commanded the HNLMS Johan de Witt (L801) in 2010-2011.

He was promoted to commodore in 2011 and appointed as Deputy Director of Plans for Operational Policy and Innovation, focusing on the future defense fields of The Netherlands. In 2012, he was promoted to rear admiral and appointed as Director of Plans. He was also a member of the Council for Defence Research and Development, the National Council for Cyber Security and the Netherlands Coast Guard Council.

In 2015, he held the position as Vice Chief of Defence, and promoted to vice admiral, and in September 22, 2017, he became the Chief of Defense and promoted to Lieutenant admiral [3]



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