David Porter (1780–1843) was naval officer in both the the United States Navy and later the commander-in-chief of the Mexican Navy. Porter saw service during the Quasi-War (1798-1800) between France and the United States. He later distinguished himself during the War of 1812 by capturing the first British warship. In March, 1814, he was forced to surrender his ship off the coast of Chile after a battle left his ship unable to offer resistance.
After launching an unauthorized invasion of Puerto Rico in 1825, he faced court-martial and resigned from the U.S. Navy. He entered the Mexican Navy, and served as its commander-in-chief from 1826-29. He returned home and eventually entered dipomatic service.