A Wolverine in the White House

November 4, 2022

We’re delighted to congratulate Lt. Cmdr. G. Graham Van Hook ’04, U.S. Navy on his appointment as a 2022-2023 White House Fellow! Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook joins an elite group of professionals from the public and private sectors. This prestigious, highly competitive fellowship has Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook serving as a liaison between cabinet secretaries, such as Dr. Miguel Cardona, Secretary of Education, and the West Wing. The fellowship spans the course of a year, and in just a few short weeks, Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook has been exposed to many new experiences like organizing cabinet meetings and attending former President Obama’s portrait unveiling. Established by former President Lyndon B. Johnson, fellowship alumni number just over 800, and have gone on to serve in some of the highest levels of government, been appointed university presidents and CEOs of major corporations, to name just a few examples of leaders that the fellowship has produced.

Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook credits his time at Bridgton as being crucial for putting him on the path to working in the White House. Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook notes, “My year at the Academy was truly formative for me. It taught me the power of grit and tenacity, along with habits that were critical for setting me up for success at the undergraduate and graduate levels of study and also what it means to be a leader.” 

Aside from the invaluable professional experience he’ll gain this year, Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook is also excited to forge lasting relationships with the other fellows in his cohort. His time at the Academy helped him understand the power of lifelong friendships, “The connections I made at Bridgton have lasted. In fact, I recently met up with a fellow alumnus over dinner and our bond remains as strong as ever.”

After his year at the Academy, Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy. He also holds an MBA from The Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a master’s degree from the University of Arkansas. Prior to his time in the White House, Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook was the Commanding Officer of the U.S.S. Tornado. He is member and contributor of the United States Naval Institute, and was a National Board of Director of the Surface Navy Association. At the conclusion of his Fellowship, Lt. Cmdr. Van Hook will head back to sea where he will ultimately take command of a destroyer. 

Again, congratulations, Lieutenant Commander! We’re excited to learn more about your time on Pennsylvania Avenue!