Curriculum Vitae Vice Admiral Boudewijn Boots

Vice Admiral Boudewijn Boots (Veghel, 1964) trained as a helmsman in the merchant navy and joined the Royal Netherlands Navy in 1986.

Boots served on board the minehunters HNLMS Haarlem and HNLMS Hellevoetsluis, with which he took part in Operation Octopus, the WEU minehunting operation during the Iran-Iraq war.

After his principal warfare and navigation officer training, he sailed on board HNLMS Van Nes and HNLMS Zuiderkruis. It was with these ships that he took part in Fairwind 1995 and Operation Sharp Guard.

In 1998, Boots was stationed on Curaçao as Head of the Operations Office of the Flag Officer, Caribbean. In this position, he assisted with coastguard and anti-drugs operations, as well as with military assistance operations in the wake of hurricanes. In 2001 and 2002, he was posted on board the frigates HNLMS Van Speijk and HNLMS Bloys Van Treslong as the Head of the Operations Department. After a year with the Navy Staff and having completed the Advanced Strategic Studies course, Boots served as staff officer for operations with the Netherlands Maritime Force. Among his roles was that of lead planner for the Dutch command period of Task Force 150 in the Indian Ocean.

In 2006, Boots was posted in the rank of commander as the Dutch signals officer to Flag Officer Sea Training in Plymouth (UK). This was followed by an individual deployment to Kabul (Afghanistan), where, as Chief of Force Integration, he assisted in Operation Enduring Freedom, the International Security Assistance Force and the NATO Training Mission Afghanistan.

From mid-2011 to mid-2013, Boots was in command of HNLMS Evertsen, which, as the flagship of Standing NATO Maritime Group 1, took part in the counterpiracy operation Ocean Shield off the coast of Somalia.

After his promotion to captain, from April 2013 to mid-2015, Boots was in charge of Sea Training Command, the training facility for crews of naval ships. Boots subsequently served as the Head of Operational Plans in the Defence Staff’s Directorate of Operations until 2018. During this period, the Netherlands took part in various operations, including those in Afghanistan, Iraq, Mali and the Baltic States.

For one year in 2018 and 2019, in the rank of commodore, Boots was Commander of Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 (SNMG-2), one of NATO’s permanent maritime forces. Under his command, NATO ships worked closely together in eight major international exercises. At the end of 2019, he went on to work as the Director of Operations in the Defence Staff, where he delivered a substantial contribution to the MoD effort in the coronavirus crisis.

Since March 2021, he has been the Vice Chief of Defence in the rank of vice admiral. He is the first deputy of the Chief of Defence and is thus jointly responsible for managing the commanders of the Defence elements, Special Operations Command (SOCOM) and Defence Cyber Command (DCC). In his role as Vice Chief of Defence, Boots is also a member of the Cyber Security Council, the independent and strategic advisory body to the cabinet on matters of cyber security in the Netherlands.

Boudewijn Boots is married and has a daughter and a son.