James Franklin ("Frank") Caldwell, Jr. (born March 24, 1959) is an admiral in the United States Navy who currently serves as director of the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program, a job once held by the program's creator, Admiral Hyman G. Rickover. He previously served as Naval Inspector General.
Caldwell received his commission graduating with distinction from the United States Naval Academy in 1981 with a Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering; he is a fifth-generation Academy graduate.
He holds a Master of Science in operations research from the Naval Postgraduate School.
Caldwell’s early sea tours include serving in both the Atlantic and Pacific Fleets. His operational assignments include duty as a division officer on USS Boston (SSN 703), engineering officer on USS Alabama (SSBN 731) (GOLD), and executive officer on USS Buffalo (SSN 715).
Caldwell commanded USS Jacksonville (SSN 699) home ported in Norfolk, Virginia; Submarine Development Squadron 12 in New London, Connecticut; and Submarine Group 9 in Bangor, Washington. In his most recent afloat command, he commanded COMSUBPAC.
Ashore, Caldwell served on the Pacific Fleet Nuclear Propulsion Examining Board, and later as Undersea Warfare Requirements officer on the staff of Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet. He also served as senior member of the Naval Submarine Force’s Tactical Readiness Evaluation Team, on the Joint Staff as deputy director for Politico-Military Affairs for Europe, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Russia and Africa, and deputy commander for U.S. Strategic Command's Joint Functional Component Command for Global Strike in Omaha, Nebraska.
On Aug 5 2015 VADM Caldwell was confirmed by the US Senate to become admiral. Caldwell assumed his duties as the seventh director of Naval Reactors on August 14, 2015.
Caldwell received the Naval Submarine League's Charles A. Lockwood Award.
His father, James Franklin Caldwell, Sr. (1935–1998), was himself a captain in the U.S. Navy, a fourth-generation Naval Academy graduate, and also a former nuclear-submarine commander; both of Caldwell Jr.'s brothers are also Naval Academy graduates.