Knox Press

At the Helm: My Journey with Family, Faith, and Friends to Calm the Storms of Life


From modest beginnings to CEO of the Navy, John Dalton’s life is an inspirational story filled with successes and failures in both the public and private sectors and how he navigated through them.

John Dalton’s life is an inspirational American success story. At the Helm traces his journey from modest beginnings in Louisiana to traveling the world and working across private and public sectors and four presidential appointments all culminating in his appointment as the 70th Secretary of the Navy.

As CEO of the Department of the Navy, including both Navy and Marine Corps, Dalton had to weather the storm of the Tailhook controversy, navigate through the Naval Academy cheating scandal, manage the new policies of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and women serving in combat. His record with these situations shines as a model of ethical leadership during crises.

John Dalton has created an account of his life for posterity, and to encourage others at this challenging juncture in American history. His memoir recounts his experiences and the bedrock values which shaped him and the hard lessons he received from them…including the essence of principled leadership.

At the Helm is a portrait of a man who has lived life ethically and to the fullest, doing his utmost to leave the world better than he found it.