Retired Navy Vice Admiral Bruce E. MacDonald LL.M. ’92 was appointed to the position of convening authority for military commissions, created by Congress in the Military Commissions Act. The appointment was made by Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates.
The overseer of the revamped military commissions manages the military’s war court, reviewing and approving charges against persons determined to be unprivileged belligerents as defined in the Military Commissions Act; appointing military commissions members; and reviewing military commissions’ verdicts and sentences.
A noted expert on military law, MacDonald was selected for his illustrious military and legal career. During his 23 years in the Navy, he served on the staffs of U.N. Command, Combined Forces Command, and U.S. Naval Forces, Korea.
In 2006, he was appointed Navy Judge Advocate General, a position he held for three years.
He was also the Seventh Fleet judge advocate in Japan, commander of Naval Legal Service Command and special counsel to the Chief of Naval Operations.
His numerous decorations include the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, the Navy Meritorious Service Medal with the Gold Star, the Navy Commendation Medal with Gold Star, and the Navy Achievement Medal with Gold Star.
MacDonald received his J.D. degree from California Western School of Law in 1987 and his LL.M. from Harvard in 1992.