Rustic American Flag Gunny's Job Board

Category Archives: MCPON

COVID-19 Navy Update: CNO and MCPON Message to the Fleet

CNO: Shipmates, it’s the 30th of March, 2020. MCPON Smith and I wanted to provide you and your families an update on COVID-19. During this extraordinary time, what remains constant are our top three priorities: taking care of you and your families, being mission ready, and supporting the whole-of-government effort.

MCPON:
This past week, we’ve seen a rise in numbers who have tested positive for the coronavirus throughout the Fleet. We continue to take this threat very seriously and are working aggressively to keep Sailors healthy, as well as to prevent further spread of the virus.

CNO: We have to think, act, and operate differently right now to both protect Sailors and to remain mission ready. This is not business as usual. That is why many commanders have implemented a 14-day fast cruise for units preparing to get underway, which will conduct important training evolutions, exercises, or deployments.
 
MCPON: Additionally, we have implemented a 14-day restricted-movement policy for new recruits at RTC. And the entire RTC staff will also remain on base for up to 90 days, to minimize potential spread of the virus.
 
CNO: We are also supporting the whole-of-government approach in many ways. USNS Mercy arrived in Los Angeles last Friday, and USNS Comfort arrived in New York City this morning. We also deployed two expeditionary medical teams: one to Dallas, Texas, and the other to New Orleans.
 
MCPON: 2,200 Navy medical professionals are on board these ships, which will serve as referral hospitals for non-COVID-19 patients. Another 1,000 medical personnel are awaiting orders to be deployed.
 
CNO: In this fight, our Navy medical team is on the front line – fighting to care and treat the American people. Other Sailors from our Reserve and Engineering communities may join the coronavirus fight soon. You all have our thanks and our gratitude.
 
MCPON: People are the lifeblood of the Navy – and we are counting on every Sailor to take this outbreak seriously.

CNO:
While we recognize some new COVID-19 policies place a burden on you and your families, these actions must be taken to ensure your safety and also to maintain mission readiness.

MCPON:
To families and loved ones at home, thank you for your support and understanding. This is a hard time, and we could not do this without you.
 
CNO: I’ll end with this: As military professionals, we prepare daily to deal with adversity, uncertainty and conflict. Our Sailors and their families are resilient. We know you will set an example for your friends, for your neighbors and in your local communities on how to make personal sacrifices in service of the collective good. So stay safe, Shipmates. Americans depend on us for security. And we will not let them down.
 

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2020/03/30/covid-19-navy-update-cno-and-mcpon-message-to-the-fleet/ U.S. Navy

CNO and MCPON Message to the Fleet on Coronavirus

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday
Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith

Shipmates, the spread of the coronavirus is something that we are taking very seriously.
 
While many of you may be anxious, worried, or wondering what happens next, leadership at every level is actively engaged on this issue.
 
Our No. 1 concern is the health and the safety of you, our Sailors – active and reserve, uniformed and civilian – as well as your families. We’re suspending official, personal, and PCS travel for the next 60 days both IN-CONUS and to designated locations OCONUS, as well as encouraging flexible work schedules and the use of telework – all designed to slow the virus’ spread.
 
For now, we must use an abundance of caution. Keep an eye on your Sailors and continue to follow the guidelines of health officials – which includes washing your hands more often, avoiding public gatherings, and staying away from others if you’re sick. Don’t be a hero.
 
Our understanding of the coronavirus is rapidly evolving, and we may have to implement further measures to combat the spread of this virus.
 
America depends upon us to help provide security and stability to this nation, and that’s exactly what we will continue to do.
 
Stay safe, Shipmates. Our nation depends on you.

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2020/03/14/cno-and-mcpon-message-to-the-fleet-on-coronavirus/ U.S. Navy

A New Era of Enlisted Education

Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith
Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps Troy Black

One of the biggest challenges and greatest responsibilities for the Department of the Navy today is getting you — America’s Sailors and Marines — ready for the next fight. The war of the future will likely happen in this generation and it’s not going to resemble what we’ve fought in the last 18 years.

It’s imperative for all of you to be experts in your skill sets and have the mental dexterity to operate in combat environments, so that under high stress in the middle of the night when chaos ensues, you’ll be more capable of taking decisive action to save each other and prevail in combat.

For this reason the Department of the Navy’s 2018 Education for Seapower study could not have come along at a better time, recognizing that tough training combined with the broadened intellectual capability of our Navy and Marine Corps team imbued with a passion for continuous learning will be our foundation. This study fundamentally transformed how we think about and prioritize enlisted education in the naval services by allowing you to focus on your job, while capturing credit for skills learned and performed; confidently helping you achieve your education goals by quantifying the work you’re already doing to cultivate in an accredited associates degree.  

200304-N-PM193-1001 WASHINGTON (March 4, 2020) Graphic created using multiple image sources, photo editing software, and digital design tools to create an infographic highlighting the U.S. Naval Community College. Initial testing of operating capabilities and partnerships are to begin in early 2021. (U.S. Navy Graphic by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Alexander C. Kubitza)

To that end, former Secretary Richard Spencer and Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly’s top priority was to create a United States Naval Community College for enlisted Sailors and Marines — an exciting demonstration of our commitment to you. The USNCC provides enlisted personnel from every background an unprecedented opportunity to learn and professionally grow throughout the course of their career.

The USNCC will kick off a pilot program in January 2021 for approximately 500 Sailors, Marines and DON civilians in the information technology and engineering fields.

In partnership with public and private colleges and universities, USNCC intends to offer a select number associate of science and associate of art degrees in fields directly related to the warfighting needs of the Navy and Marine Corps, all at no cost to you — the service member. The opportunity to pursue and even complete an associate’s degree at the beginning of your career will also be transferable to any of our partnered education institutions to further degree programs or certifications.

The USNCC will kick off a pilot program in January 2021 for approximately 500 Sailors, Marines and DON civilians in the information technology and engineering fields. By the end of 2022, USNCC will have more than 5,000 students enrolled and by the end of 2025, every newly accessed Sailor and Marine will automatically be enrolled, which will guide you throughout your military career and beyond.

The tuition assistance program will remain so you can continue your path of learning and pursuing personal growth.

College and a lifelong dedication to learning is incredibly important. Continuous learning helps to develop critical thinking skills, which makes us better Sailors and Marines, better leaders, and ultimately better citizens. The path of military service is a difficult one, education should enhance your role in our national security as well as enable your future goals. The United States Naval Community College will no doubt advance our fleet performance, provide warfighting advantages and ensure that the development of enlisted Navy and Marine leaders remains a critical warfighting capability for our national defense.

191016-N-YG104-0004 WASHINGTON (Oct. 16, 2019) Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps (SMMC) Troy E. Black and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Russell Smith pose for a photo. SMMC and MCPON met to discuss naval integration and partnership across the Navy-Marine Corps team. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Sarah Villegas)

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2020/03/10/a-new-era-of-enlisted-education/ U.S. Navy

What We Do Is Hard; It’s OK to Ask for Help

By Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith

Suicide is one of the most complex problems we face, one that has a tremendously detrimental effect on our Navy—and one that, as a self-inflicted casualty, is preventable. We’ve tragically lost Sailors, our teammates and friends, who felt that the only option they had left was a terrible one—one that ended their pain, and yet in doing so inflicted a heavy and interminable burden of confusion and sadness on those of us who remained behind.  

To paint suicide as a simple and straightforward issue would be a gross oversimplification; there are many, disparate reasons someone may make that decision for themselves. Short-term issues that seem insurmountable, or longer-term feelings of loneliness, not belonging or being wanted can make suicide seem like an attractive option. Chronic pain or a perceived hopelessness that makes fighting for a better tomorrow seem futile, perhaps seeking to unburden loved ones or escape from a painful situation. To the one suffering, it’s difficult to understand the actual impacts for those destined to live with a chasm in our hearts, in our units and in our lives—with unanswered questions and a long list of “what ifs.” That is equally difficult.     

So while there may not be one simple reason that we can pursue, we need to do something to change our culture and address this issue in a more substantive way. Feelings of depression and self-harm do not respect rank, and factors like financial health or a lofty leadership title does nothing to inoculate against the ache of loneliness or living in a state of desolation. Hopelessness can stalk anyone, whether they live in the heart of a major city, are stationed on a destroyer or serve in a remote or austere location. We cannot take for granted, based on anything other than a conversation and how we interact with each other, that someone is “ok”—despite appearing to have everything going for them—just as we cannot ignore someone who is clearly struggling with the circumstances of their life. Most of us will find ourselves at risk at some point in our lives, and it is in those moments when we need to connect that a connection must be made.

One common thread seems to be clear: Connecting to one another in meaningful ways works against feelings central to wanting to leave unexpectedly. Finding ways to check on each other—not like you’re fulfilling the day’s errands but in a truly authentic and meaningful way—is a great start. Embracing our shipmates as needed and beloved members of our Navy family: that is something you and I can do, or continue to do, in order to really make a difference. Talk to your Sailors, but also talk to your boss. The burden of leadership can often be a heavy one; it’s ok to ask your boss how she or he is doing, because we all should be genuinely concerned for the welfare of the team, senior and junior alike.  

Share your strength, and draw strength from your shipmates. Reinforce those concepts that our teams rely on as binding elements—trust, honesty, transparency and compassion—which will engender a sense of belonging that will combat the dangerous feelings of isolation. Our Sailors must be reminded, and must know through and through, that we don’t just care for each other; no, we rely on absolutely and need each other to face the rigors of combat, to survive and return home to our loved ones. 

We each swore an oath to face the many determined enemies of our American way of life, and they are indeed formidable. For the Sailor who may be in that place of loneliness, I tell you, shipmate, that I have been you—as many have been, whether they will admit it or not. I would implore you to consider how much your family and your friends need you, and just as importantly how much your shipmates need you in the days, weeks and years to come. 

War will continue to challenge us, and not everyone who sails into battle will survive; you may be the reason that a ship returns victorious, or a squadron returns stateside as a complete unit. You could be the reason a submarine was able to navigate home after conducting a harrowing mission that, as far as the rest of the world is concerned, was never there. You are needed, you are necessary, and I hope all of us can stand together to face whatever comes next. What we do is hard; it’s ok not to be ok, but it’s not ok not to ask for help. If you’re not in a great place, come to us and let us help you get back to a mindset where you can again take your place in the fight.

As your shipmates, we will be looking for you, but you don’t have to wait for us to discern that you are the one who must take a knee for a time. Help us, so we can help you, and then we will get after the enemy—together.

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2019/09/25/what-we-do-is-hard-its-ok-to-ask-for-help/ poyrazdogany

Pacific Northwest CDS: How to Use Your Voice, Invoke Positive Change, and Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

By MC1 Sarah Villegas, Office of the MCPON

Known for its sprawling mountains, pine forests, and rivers of coffee, the Pacific Northwest (PNW) is a picturesque tourist destination.

It’s also home to several navy bases — serving critical warfare areas and providing an environment for the fleet to train, repair and replenish. 

MyNavyHr recently brought Navy leadership and detailers to meet with PNW Sailors to share more on current and upcoming initiatives while giving attendees the chance to share feedback during a Career Development Symposium.


The forum was about practicing radical candor on both ends: admirals and seamen alike, being transparent about limitations and opinions respectively. Imagine having the chance to tell “them” how much you dislike a policy or have a bone to pick with the process of picking orders? Sailors were able to do just that. Rather than being penalized for criticism, they were encouraged to speak up and offer solutions as to how we can work to fix issues and improve the Navy. 

This is where the whole process starts. Leaders like MCPON, the Chief of Naval Personnel, and the commander of Navy Personnel Command hit the road to find out what you need most. They visit ships, submarines and air squadrons to see what our folks need in order to accomplish the mission, while taking care of themselves and their families. 

Fulfilling those needs may involve various types of actions such as requesting increased funding in the budget, mining for innovative ideas, to finding compromises that work best for the Sailor and the Navy at large. From their visit to the deckplates, leadership then takes feedback and new ideas back to Washington D.C. to discuss with other senior leaders, such as the Chief of Naval Operations, Secretary of the Navy, and, as necessary, congressional members.   

Admittedly, positive change and addressing some of our most vexing challenges can be a slow moving process, often requiring additional funding, approval at various levels, and congressional support.

190227-N-YG104-0026 WASHINGTON (February 27, 2019) Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith departs the Russell Senate Building, near the U.S. Capitol building, after testifying on Military Personnel Policies and Military Family Readiness during a hearing before the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel. Smith shared testimonies that advocated for child care, housing, and Sailor 2025 initiatives. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication 1st Class Sarah Villegas/Released)

MCPON Testifies to Congress, Advocates for Quality of Life Resources

Some issues are easier to identify and solve than others. The feedback we get from Sailors on the deck plates is only part of the equation. Other parts include Facebook Live events, questions and comments on command social media pages, external media coverage, and other types of events, for instance, the National Discussion on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at America’s Colleges, Universities and Service Academies

From these multiple sources, themes start to emerge, priorities determined, and perspective solutions become clearer. This all results in the wheels of positive change in the Navy to begin turning internally — and the wheels are always turning whether you seem them or not. 

This is why it’s crucial that you speak up — in a constructive manner — and share your insights. More than saying “it sucks,” share your ideas on how we can make it better for you, your Sailors, your family, and everyone that follows. After all, it’s your Navy. We are fortunate to live in an era where leadership believes that your voice is critical in solving the issues at hand. And, increasingly, there a multiple avenues of communication that are easier and more direct. Sure, it might seem intimidating to stand up and ask MCPON or an admiral a question, but remember, these leaders come to listen.  

The purpose of the many efforts discussed at CDS is to remove distractions that stand in the way of readiness. “Instead of standing in line at PSD or wasting your time trying to fix your pay, we want you to be able to perfect your craft while knowing that you and your family are well cared for.” -MCPON Smith 


The Navy is home to tremendous opportunities. As with any organization, it must continuously evolve and remedy issues in order to make it better for those who are a part of it. In order to reduce administrative distractions, there are projects underway to consolidate and improve communication between databases, so that a Sailor has to input one piece of information one time. Some of these creaky databases date back decades! That’s just one example that shows the mountains we’re climbing to modernize our personnel systems.

Commonly Asked Questions from CDS PNW:

Q: How does the Meritorious Advancement Program affect quotas? 

A: 10 percent of the total fiscal year 2019 advancement quotas have been allocated to 2019 MAP Season Two. NAVADMIN 176/19

Q: What’s the latest on Tuition Assistance?

A: Beginning Oct. 1, 2019, enlisted Sailors and officers must complete a minimum of two years of service before becoming eligible to use TA or NCPACE instructor-led or Distance Learning (DL) courses. This requirement may not be waived. In addition, TA and NCPACE (DL) funding is capped at 12 semester hours (or equivalent quarter hours) per fiscal year (FY) and a total of 120 semester hours (or equivalent quarter hours) in a career.  Most Sailors in recent years have only used up to an average of nine semester hours annually. NAVADMIN 114/19

Q: What is the Navy doing about increasing the availability of child care? 

A: The Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC), which oversees the CDCs and MCCYN, is working hard to address the child care capacity shortfalls issue. While the Navy has made significant headway to meet the demand for child care Navy-wide through the combination of military-operated and approved community-based programs, there is more work to do. In FY20, Navy has budgeted increased funding for child care to add 1,000 new spaces through community partnerships. 

Q: Why is the Navy including planks to the Navy PRT? 

A: The plank is a better test of core strength and endurance and will likely reduce lower back injuries or strain due to poor form when doing the curl-up. The plank will be a timed event with scoring based on the amount of time a Sailor can maintain the plank position. Currently, the goal is to release these changes in calendar year 2020.

Q: What about beards?

A: No changes to the current policy are being considered. Safety continues to be the primary concern. In March 2016, the Naval Safety Center conducted a study to consider how facial hair affects the proper fit of respirators worn to conduct many duties in the Navy. The results showed that in general, the presence of beards and wide sideburns had a detrimental effect on the performance of the respirators. The study concluded that facial hair interferes with the seal and degrades respirator performance.

Obviously some of these are of much greater importance than others — depending on your circumstances both professionally and personally. These issues aren’t to be taken lightly, because they directly correlate to the livelihood, well-being, and retention of skilled Sailors.

Even if you don’t have a CDS coming to you anytime soon, you’re encouraged to reach out and reach up. Write a point paper, send an email to (usnpeople@navy.mil), or connect with the Navy on social media to shape the future of our Navy. Not only are you allowed, but you’re encouraged to do so. 

Just as the PNW is riddled with rugged terrain and obstacles to overcome, so is your service. Anything worth doing will have its challenges — but it’s better to be equipped with the gear and resources you need to get to the top of that mountain. 

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2019/08/21/pacific-northwest-cds-how-to-use-your-voice-invoke-positive-change-and-answers-to-frequently-asked-questions/ parcher

Pacific Northwest CDS: How to Use Your Voice, Invoke Positive Change, and Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

By MC1 Sarah Villegas, Office of the MCPON

Known for its sprawling mountains, pine forests, and rivers of coffee, the Pacific Northwest (PNW) is a picturesque tourist destination.

It’s also home to several navy bases — serving critical warfare areas and providing an environment for the fleet to train, repair and replenish. 

MyNavyHr recently brought Navy leadership and detailers to meet with PNW Sailors to share more on current and upcoming initiatives while giving attendees the chance to share feedback during a Career Development Symposium.


The forum was about practicing radical candor on both ends: admirals and seamen alike, being transparent about limitations and opinions respectively. Imagine having the chance to tell “them” how much you dislike a policy or have a bone to pick with the process of picking orders? Sailors were able to do just that. Rather than being penalized for criticism, they were encouraged to speak up and offer solutions as to how we can work to fix issues and improve the Navy. 

This is where the whole process starts. Leaders like MCPON, the Chief of Naval Personnel, and the commander of Navy Personnel Command hit the road to find out what you need most. They visit ships, submarines and air squadrons to see what our folks need in order to accomplish the mission, while taking care of themselves and their families. 

Fulfilling those needs may involve various types of actions such as requesting increased funding in the budget, mining for innovative ideas, to finding compromises that work best for the Sailor and the Navy at large. From their visit to the deckplates, leadership then takes feedback and new ideas back to Washington D.C. to discuss with other senior leaders, such as the Chief of Naval Operations, Secretary of the Navy, and, as necessary, congressional members.   

Admittedly, positive change and addressing some of our most vexing challenges can be a slow moving process, often requiring additional funding, approval at various levels, and congressional support.

190227-N-YG104-0026 WASHINGTON (February 27, 2019) Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith departs the Russell Senate Building, near the U.S. Capitol building, after testifying on Military Personnel Policies and Military Family Readiness during a hearing before the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel. Smith shared testimonies that advocated for child care, housing, and Sailor 2025 initiatives. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication 1st Class Sarah Villegas/Released)

MCPON Testifies to Congress, Advocates for Quality of Life Resources

Some issues are easier to identify and solve than others. The feedback we get from Sailors on the deck plates is only part of the equation. Other parts include Facebook Live events, questions and comments on command social media pages, external media coverage, and other types of events, for instance, the National Discussion on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at America’s Colleges, Universities and Service Academies

From these multiple sources, themes start to emerge, priorities determined, and perspective solutions become clearer. This all results in the wheels of positive change in the Navy to begin turning internally — and the wheels are always turning whether you seem them or not. 

This is why it’s crucial that you speak up — in a constructive manner — and share your insights. More than saying “it sucks,” share your ideas on how we can make it better for you, your Sailors, your family, and everyone that follows. After all, it’s your Navy. We are fortunate to live in an era where leadership believes that your voice is critical in solving the issues at hand. And, increasingly, there a multiple avenues of communication that are easier and more direct. Sure, it might seem intimidating to stand up and ask MCPON or an admiral a question, but remember, these leaders come to listen.  

The purpose of the many efforts discussed at CDS is to remove distractions that stand in the way of readiness. “Instead of standing in line at PSD or wasting your time trying to fix your pay, we want you to be able to perfect your craft while knowing that you and your family are well cared for.” -MCPON Smith 


The Navy is home to tremendous opportunities. As with any organization, it must continuously evolve and remedy issues in order to make it better for those who are a part of it. In order to reduce administrative distractions, there are projects underway to consolidate and improve communication between databases, so that a Sailor has to input one piece of information one time. Some of these creaky databases date back decades! That’s just one example that shows the mountains we’re climbing to modernize our personnel systems.

 

Commonly Asked Questions from CDS PNW:

Q: How does the Meritorious Advancement Program affect quotas? 

A: 10 percent of the total fiscal year 2019 advancement quotas have been allocated to 2019 MAP Season Two. NAVADMIN 176/19

Q: What’s the latest on Tuition Assistance?

A: Beginning Oct. 1, 2019, enlisted Sailors and officers must complete a minimum of two years of service before becoming eligible to use TA or NCPACE instructor-led or Distance Learning (DL) courses. This requirement may not be waived. In addition, TA and NCPACE (DL) funding is capped at 12 semester hours (or equivalent quarter hours) per fiscal year (FY) and a total of 120 semester hours (or equivalent quarter hours) in a career.  Most Sailors in recent years have only used up to an average of nine semester hours annually. NAVADMIN 114/19

Q: What is the Navy doing about increasing the availability of child care? 

A: The Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC), which oversees the CDCs and MCCYN, is working hard to address the child care capacity shortfalls issue. While the Navy has made significant headway to meet the demand for child care Navy-wide through the combination of military-operated and approved community-based programs, there is more work to do. In FY20, Navy has budgeted increased funding for child care to add 1,000 new spaces through community partnerships. 

Q: Why is the Navy including planks to the Navy PRT? 

A: The plank is a better test of core strength and endurance and will likely reduce lower back injuries or strain due to poor form when doing the curl-up. The plank will be a timed event with scoring based on the amount of time a Sailor can maintain the plank position. Currently, the goal is to release these changes in calendar year 2020.

Q: What about beards?

A: No changes to the current policy are being considered. Safety continues to be the primary concern. In March 2016, the Naval Safety Center conducted a study to consider how facial hair affects the proper fit of respirators worn to conduct many duties in the Navy. The results showed that in general, the presence of beards and wide sideburns had a detrimental effect on the performance of the respirators. The study concluded that facial hair interferes with the seal and degrades respirator performance.

 

Obviously some of these are of much greater importance than others — depending on your circumstances both professionally and personally. These issues aren’t to be taken lightly, because they directly correlate to the livelihood, well-being, and retention of skilled Sailors.

Even if you don’t have a CDS coming to you anytime soon, you’re encouraged to reach out and reach up. Write a point paper, send an email to (usnpeople@navy.mil), or connect with the Navy on social media to shape the future of our Navy. Not only are you allowed, but you’re encouraged to do so. 

Just as the PNW is riddled with rugged terrain and obstacles to overcome, so is your service. Anything worth doing will have its challenges — but it’s better to be equipped with the gear and resources you need to get to the top of that mountain. 

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2019/08/21/pacific-northwest-cds-how-to-use-your-voice-invoke-positive-change-and-answers-to-frequently-asked-questions/ parcher

Congratulations, CPO Selects; Now Earn This

Congratulations to all those selected for advancement to Chief Petty Officer. This is our most important milestone achievement in enlisted advancement, and you should be incredibly proud of all you have accomplished.

Chief Petty Officer Selection Results

The Navy you have grown up in will look very different to you six weeks from now — what you’ve done to demonstrate your readiness for this responsibility will be different from how you apply your skills as a member of the Chief’s Mess. Take some time to reflect on all who have had a hand in raising you to be the outstanding leaders you have become — everyone who has ever advocated for you, empowered you, trained, taught or developed you put you in this position, at the precipice of a new way of life. In moments of difficulty, someone put an arm around your shoulder and reinforced your confidence; in moments of sadness, someone consoled you; in moments of great achievement, someone celebrated with you, because no one succeeds alone – you led your team to victory. The investment in you is almost immeasurable, as it is too great to be captured in terms of dollars and cents or a simple quantification of time. Recognizing that is important, because it highlights your sacred duty to learn how the Chief’s Mess operates, how we transcend the sum of our parts to make the Navy better as a whole — to network and share, and to build winning teams so that we prevail in combat.

Over the next several weeks you will be elated, and you will be saddened and frustrated — you will experience the immense joy of success, and the desolate pain of failure.  All of these will build you, will make you stronger, and are required of our cadre of senior technical experts who make the Navy run. Chief Petty Officer Initiation is a refined syllabus of comprehensive and thoughtful events, constructed and woven together to carefully transform our top performing First Class Petty Officers into basically-trained Chief Petty Officers. You will learn to better and more thoroughly evaluate problems, make difficult decisions more easily, share difficult news and speak truth to power more readily and, most importantly, build teams ready to fight and win in combat. 

Laying the Keel 2.0

This is not the beginning of the end; it is the end of the beginning.  You will learn and grow — as you already have — for the remainder of your time in the Navy. Including my own, this is my 21st CPO Initiation, and I still learn something every day. You are not in this alone; the roughly 36,000 active duty and reserve Chief Petty Officers, supported by nearly 500,000 living veterans of the Navy who are also duly initiated members of the Mess, are all emotionally invested in bringing you into the Mess the right way. We will set the bar for you and clearly delineate the high standards required for you as a member of the Mess. I am confident that you will rise to the occasion and demonstrate to the Chiefs that you are ready, and on that day I look forward to clasping your hand and welcoming you as a brother or sister in arms.  

My charge to you is that you go into this training “all-in.” The debt you are about to incur to the Chiefs who will finish your initial training, along with all of those mentioned above that contributed to your success, is a debt that can never be repaid. You must seize this new and exciting opportunity to lead — and forever strive to “earn this.”   

Congratulations!

– MCPON Russell Smith

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2019/08/01/congratulations-cpo-selects-now-earn-this/ U.S. Navy

Charge Letter from MCPON Smith

I wish I could write every Chief Petty Officer Selectee your own personal charge letter. It would give me great joy to meet all 4,700 of you – look you in the eye, shake your hand and welcome you into our Mess. Since I am unable to do that, please accept this charge letter to help guide you as you begin this new chapter.

Chief,

First and foremost, congratulations! This is quite an accomplishment and you should be incredibly proud of what you’ve done to put yourself in this position. Take a knee and contemplate that for a moment – all the experiences that have brought you to this milestone. Never forget where you came from and stay grounded in your beginnings. You’ve worked hard to demonstrate that you have the skills, talent and abilities. Now you will contribute to the Navy in an even more meaningful way.

That said, this selection is not a reward for what you’ve done throughout your extraordinary career. With your every act as a junior Sailor, you prepared yourself for this moment, and we are now calling on that talent and demanding – through your acceptance of this advancement – more from you. You will be expected to work longer hours, solve far more difficult problems and challenges, do more to empower your junior Sailors, and provide better and more seasoned advice to your officers. You must now work within the network of Chief Petty Officers, without desire for personal accolades, but rather a singular focus on building winning teams. In doing so, you will help the Mess do more together than we would otherwise be capable of based on the sum of our individual Chiefs alone.

MCPON Russell Smith

You stand ready to don your anchors entirely as a result of the culmination of every letter, phone call, mentoring session, sacrifice of time and resources, faith and goodwill of both supervisors and junior Sailors… everyone who has ever advocated for you, empowered you, helped fine-tune your eval, submitted an award for you, gave you a duty, listened to your opinion, called someone on your behalf, took a burden off your back, or put an arm around you and reassured you when you were frustrated. You have thousands of people standing behind you. Your Sailors, family, and your friends – many you know, but probably even some you don’t – have all given you something, and you are only here because of them. Because of this, you have a special obligation as result: to “earn this” every day. Be worthy of the sacrifice and love of the many who gave you this exalted opportunity. This is now your job, your sacred duty, to represent the best of yourself in everything you do, to be worthy of the benevolence that has given you this opportunity to be “The Chief.”

Confront your destiny head-on. Be the leader that you are and continue to grow by giving more and more to our Sailors every day. Humility is key – regardless of how much you feel you’ve earned your salt and proven your own. Accept your failures and grow from them – “when you lose, don’t lose the lesson.” Share the credit for your successes, and strive every day to “earn this” by charging forward on creating a better, stronger Navy at every opportunity.

You are now part of a longstanding and exceptional tradition. Lean on the vast network you are now a part of. Together, as unified Mess, we will relentlessly pursue excellence and build winning teams for our Navy, in order to achieve peak operational readiness as a combat ready force able to compete and win the high-end fight at sea.

Congratulations, and Welcome to the Mess!

All My Best,
Russell L. Smith,
MCPON

http://navylive.dodlive.mil/2018/09/12/charge-letter-from-mcpon-smith/ U.S. Navy

Charge Letter from MCPON Smith

I wish I could write every Chief Petty Officer Selectee your own personal charge letter. It would give me great joy to meet all 4,700 of you – look you in the eye, shake your hand and welcome you into our Mess. Since I am unable to do that, please accept this charge letter to help guide you as you begin this new chapter.

Chief,

First and foremost, congratulations! This is quite an accomplishment and you should be incredibly proud of what you’ve done to put yourself in this position. Take a knee and contemplate that for a moment – all the experiences that have brought you to this milestone. Never forget where you came from and stay grounded in your beginnings. You’ve worked hard to demonstrate that you have the skills, talent and abilities. Now you will contribute to the Navy in an even more meaningful way.

That said, this selection is not a reward for what you’ve done throughout your extraordinary career. With your every act as a junior Sailor, you prepared yourself for this moment, and we are now calling on that talent and demanding – through your acceptance of this advancement – more from you. You will be expected to work longer hours, solve far more difficult problems and challenges, do more to empower your junior Sailors, and provide better and more seasoned advice to your officers. You must now work within the network of Chief Petty Officers, without desire for personal accolades, but rather a singular focus on building winning teams. In doing so, you will help the Mess do more together than we would otherwise be capable of based on the sum of our individual Chiefs alone.

MCPON Russell Smith

You stand ready to don your anchors entirely as a result of the culmination of every letter, phone call, mentoring session, sacrifice of time and resources, faith and goodwill of both supervisors and junior Sailors… everyone who has ever advocated for you, empowered you, helped fine-tune your eval, submitted an award for you, gave you a duty, listened to your opinion, called someone on your behalf, took a burden off your back, or put an arm around you and reassured you when you were frustrated. You have thousands of people standing behind you. Your Sailors, family, and your friends – many you know, but probably even some you don’t – have all given you something, and you are only here because of them. Because of this, you have a special obligation as result: to “earn this” every day. Be worthy of the sacrifice and love of the many who gave you this exalted opportunity. This is now your job, your sacred duty, to represent the best of yourself in everything you do, to be worthy of the benevolence that has given you this opportunity to be “The Chief.”

Confront your destiny head-on. Be the leader that you are and continue to grow by giving more and more to our Sailors every day. Humility is key – regardless of how much you feel you’ve earned your salt and proven your own. Accept your failures and grow from them – “when you lose, don’t lose the lesson.” Share the credit for your successes, and strive every day to “earn this” by charging forward on creating a better, stronger Navy at every opportunity.

You are now part of a longstanding and exceptional tradition. Lean on the vast network you are now a part of. Together, as unified Mess, we will relentlessly pursue excellence and build winning teams for our Navy, in order to achieve peak operational readiness as a combat ready force able to compete and win the high-end fight at sea.

Congratulations, and Welcome to the Mess!

All My Best,
Russell L. Smith,
MCPON

http://navylive.dodlive.mil/2018/09/12/charge-letter-from-mcpon-smith/ U.S. Navy

A Message From Fleet Master Chief Russell Smith

Shipmates,

At the request of the Chief of Naval Operations, I have now temporarily assumed the duties of the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy. I’m humbled to have been chosen to take on the important charge of maintaining the form and function of the office until the CNO can conduct a thorough search and make a thoughtful decision on who will best advocate for the nearly 270,000 Enlisted Sailors in our Navy.

Judging from what I’ve seen on social media and heard on the deck plates, the issues that brought this about have stirred some emotional responses.  It’s vital we maintain the integrity of the office and what it stands for — advocating on behalf of our Sailors and their families.

Our Navy is a learning organization that is constantly growing and evolving. As an institution we are strong enough to absorb this challenge, but we must visibly lead through it if we are to come out stronger on the other side. With that I say thank you for your faith, support and well wishes as we keep charging to make this happen. This is the beginning of the next chapter for this historic office. Our goal is to provide authentic, transparent communications and a seamless transition.

Continued success for our Sailors is a truly collaborative effort. Together we will continue to execute the plans and initiatives important to our Navy’s future and maintain our focus on warfighting readiness without missing a beat.

Thank you in advance for your patience, professionalism and support — together we’ll steer this ship through these seas.

Very Respectfully,
FLTCM(SW/IW/AW) Russell Smith

WASHINGTON (June 22, 2018) Official file photo of Fleet Master Chief Russell Smith. Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John M. Richardson announced June 22, that Master Chief Smith will temporarily assume the duties of the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy. (U.S. Navy photo/Released)

http://navylive.dodlive.mil/2018/06/28/a-message-from-fleet-master-chief-russell-smith/ parcher