Commodore Keith Blount, Royal Navy
Deputy Commander, Combined Maritime Forces, United Kingdom Maritime Component Commander
Keith Blount commenced his career at Britannia Royal Naval College in 1984. Joining as a pilot, he flew Sea King and Gazelle helicopters specialising in anti-submarine warfare and search and rescue. He was awarded the Bell Davies trophy as the top student pilot of his year, is a qualified instructor and was a member of the Royal Navy Helicopter Display Team in 1993. In 1994 he changed commission to focus on ship-borne warfare and qualified as a Principal Warfare Officer.
Blount has enjoyed huge variety in his career, sharing his time between the cockpit, bridge, operations room and office. He has commanded 3 warships; HMS ANGLESEY, HMS SOMERSET and HMS OCEAN. He has also commanded the Iraqi maritime Task Group based on the Al Basrah oil terminal, and held Chief of Staff appointments in CTF 151 and Operation ATALANTA, both conducting counter piracy. In addition, he spent over 2 years working for Flag Officer Sea Training as Commander Sea Training and Commander Mobile Sea Training.
His staff appointments have included 3 periods in the Ministry of Defence, the most recent of which was as Military Assistant to the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff. He has also served as a member of the Directing Staff on the UK Joint Advanced Command and Staff course. Blount holds a Master of Arts degree in Defence Studies and was appointed Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 2012.
In September 2013 he returned to command, as the United Kingdom Maritime Component Commander and Deputy Commander Combined Maritime Forces based in Bahrain.