Admiral Cem GÜRDENİZ graduated from Turkish Naval Academy in 1979. As a deck officer he served in different in destroyers and frigates. He assumed the Command of guided missile frigate TCG Gaziantep in 1998 and Third Destroyer Division in 2002.
He completed his educations in Turkish Naval War College and Armed Forces College in 1989 and 2002 respectively. He holds two masters degrees from US Naval Postgraduate School and Université Libre Brussels (ULB) in personnel management and international politics.
He was promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral (lower half) in 2004 and upper half in 2008. He served as the Chief of Strategy Department and then the head of Plans and Policy Division in Turkish Naval Forces Headquarters. As his combat duties, he has served as the commander of Amphibious Ships Group and Mine Fleet between 2007 and 2009. He retired in 2012. He founded Istanbul Koç University Maritime Forum in 2015. He still serves as the Director of Maritime Forum. He is columnist in a daily newspaper on maritime issues and writer of 8 books related with maritime strategy, maritime history and maritime culture.