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Surface Navy Association 2020 National Symposium

Owning Tomorrow’s Fight Today

Jan. 14-16, 2020

Welcome to Navy Live blog coverage of the 2019 Surface Navy Association National Symposium in Arlington, Virginia, where naval leaders, government officials and members of private industry will discuss a broad range of professional and career issues of importance to the surface warfare community.

The theme of the symposium is Owning Tomorrow’s Fight Today. The event provides an opportunity to highlight the Surface Navy’s vision for the future. Below you will find articles about and links to live events at the symposium, as well as the schedule of events.

Find out more at the SNA website: https://navysnaevents.org/national-symposium/index.html.

“The United States Navy has a Surface Force that is second to none, and we have taken deliberate steps to maintain that premier status in the face of great power competition,” said. “We will build on our improvements as we build the best mariners, build the most lethal ships and warfighters, and build fully-prepared warfare commanders.”

–Vice Adm. Richard Brown, Commander, Naval Surface Forces

LIVESTREAM VIDEO LINKS

Day 1 (Tuesday, Jan. 14):

Day 2: (Wednesday, Jan. 15)

Day 3: (Thursday, Jan. 16)

SCHEDULE
(Subject to change. All times EST.)

Tuesday, Jan. 14

1045-1245: Enlisted Roundtable and Luncheon
Active Duty/Reservists in Uniform/ Retired Enlisted, E-1 to E-9 only
Moderator: CMDCM Bryan Exum, USN(Ret)

1030-1145: Retired Flag Briefing (Flag Officers Only; All Branches Welcome) VADM Rich Brown, USN, Commander, Naval Surface Forces/Commander, US Pacific Fleet
RADM Gene Black, USN, Director, Surface Warfare (N96)

1130-1200: SNA Podcast
Moderator: CAPT Paul Rinn (Ret)

1230-1330: NAVSEA Media Availability: LCS in the Fleet Today

1300-1310: Opening Remarks: VADM Rick Hunt, USN (Ret), President, Surface Navy Association

1310-1410: The Surface Navy Today
VADM Rich Brown, USN, Commander, Naval Surface Forces/Commander, US Pacific Fleet

1330-1400: NAVSEA Media Availability: Surface Maintenance Engineering Planning Program (SURFMEPP) Update
John Murphy, SURFMEPP Deputy

1410-1510: Keynote Address (Seminar Package Required): ADM Michael Gilday, USN, Chief of Naval Operations

1530-1650: Updating the Surface Navy Vision
RADM Gene Black, USN, Director, Surface Warfare (N96)
Maj Gen Tracy King, USMC, Director, Expeditionary Warfare (N95)

1700: USNI Podcast Interview with VADM Rich Brown

Wednesday, Jan. 15

0900-0930: NAVSEA Media Availability: Surface Ship Modernization Update
Capt. Kevin Byrne, Surface Ship Modernization program manager

0930-1000: NAVSEA Media Availability: Amphibious, Auxiliary and Sealift Shipbuilding Update
Matt Sermon, Amphibious, Auxiliary and Sealift Office PEO Ships
executive director

10000-1030: NAVSEA Media Availability: DDG 51 Flight III Update
CAPT Seth Miller, DDG 51 Class program manager
CAPT Jason Hall, Above Water Sensors program manager

1015-1100: Coast Guard Update
ADM Charles W. Ray, USCG
Deputy Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard

1100-1145: NAVSEA Media Availability: DDG 1000 Class Update
CAPT Smith, DDG 1000 Class program manager

1100-1130: NAVSEA Media Availability: Naval Power & Energy Systems: Way Forward
Steve Markle, U.S. Navy Electric Ships program manager

1100-1145: Marine Corps Update
Gen David H. Berger, USMC
Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps

1300-1330: NAVSEA Media Availability:Surface Training Systems Update
Bob Kerno, Surface Training Systems program manager

1330-1400 NAVSEA Media Availability: Surface Ship Sustainment Update
Capt. Steve Murray, Surface Ship Sustainment program manager

1400-1430: NAVSEA Media Availability: USNS Navajo-class Towing, Salvage and Rescue (T-ATS) Overview
Chris Paulus, Support Ships, Boats and Craft assistant program manager

1400-1500: Transformation of the Navy Warfighter for the 21st Century
Moderator: VADM John B. Nowell, Jr., USN, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Manpower, Personnel, Training and Education, N1, OPNAV Chief of Naval Personnel

1515-1615: Navy/Marine Corps Integration
Moderator: VADM James Kilby, USN, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Warfighting Requirements & Capabilities, N9, OPNAV

1615-1700: Keynote Address: The Hon. James F. Geurts,
Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development & Acquisition

1800-1930: Naval Heritage Program – “Life and Times of Admiral Bulkeley”

Thursday, Jan. 16

0830-0915: Keynote Address: ADM Christopher W. Grady, USN, Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command

0900-0930: NAVSEA Media Availability: In-Service Aircraft Carriers Update
Capt. Charles Ehnes, In-Service Aircraft Carrier program manager

0930-1030: NAVSEA Media Availability: CVN 78 Update
Capt. Ron Rutan, CVN 78 Class program manager

1000-1030: NAVSEA Media Availability: Future Aircraft Carriers Update
Capt. Philip Malone, Future Aircraft Carriers program manager

1015-1145: Building the Future Force
Moderator: VADM Thomas J. Moore, USN, Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command

1300-1330: NAVSEA Media Availability: Unmanned Maritime Systems Update
CAPT Pete Small, Unmanned Maritime Systems program manager

1330-1400: NAVSEA Media Availability: Mine Warfare Update
CAPT Danielle George, Mine Warfare Programs manager

1400-1430: NAVSEA Media Availability: Mission Package Program Update
CAPT Gus Weekes, Mission Modules program manager

1415-1530: Maintaining the Current Force
Moderator: VADM Moore, USN, Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command

1645-1730: Closing Remarks: VADM Richard Hunt, USN (Ret), President, Surface Navy Association

https://navylive.dodlive.mil/2020/01/13/surface-navy-association-2020-national-symposium/ U.S. Navy

Surface Reflections

By Adm. Bill Moran Vice Chief of Naval Operations

Today kicks off the first day of the Surface Navy Association Annual Symposium, an event that offers much opportunity to share our collective course and speed with each other and with the American public. If only millions of Americans could see first-hand what their Navy is doing around the globe, they would quickly realize the amazing work being done by the men and women who keep America safe and help protect our way of life.

America’s sea power is unique, in its substantial influence in times of peace and in times of war; it reflects the very best of our Nation. Every generation of Americans should be exposed to the inextricable links between sea power, prosperity, and national security. It’s something we should take great pride in – something that is truly foundational to our American way of life.

The Symposium offers many young midshipmen, junior officers and Sailors an opportunity to see what is on the horizon – to get excited about what our surface forces are doing.  It’s also an opportunity for leadership to meet the future and help deliver a Navy that our Sailors and the American public deserve.

A Navy that is larger and more capable; one focused on innovating, iterating and modernizing the current force, while growing new platforms and capabilities for the future.

A Navy that moves faster; buys and delivers faster, orients and decides faster and shoots faster than our adversaries.

Finally, a Navy that places an aggressive, determined, and unrelenting focus on readiness and warfighting in the here and now.

Ready to fight today and tomorrow

The timing of this event provides us a chance to reflect and ask if we need to adjust course and speed to get a faster, larger and more capable Navy.

After two decades of land wars half a world away, we have tons of recent experience meeting urgent requirements, and little memory of the strategic long game. Like many families who live paycheck to paycheck, we’ve fallen behind on our bills. We are accustomed to prioritizing urgent requirements well ahead of preparing for future uncertainties.

In truth, this new age of rising competition, meeting near-term mission at the long-term expense of equipment and people will no longer be an option. It won’t prepare us for the high-end fight, and it won’t allow us to grow and maintain the Navy our Sailors and the American people deserve.

In light of this, and after years of behaviors shaped by continuing resolutions and sequestration, Congress and the President have laid billions into the budget over the past two years. Funding for ship and aviation depot maintenance, it went towards bringing in more talented young men and women to address manning shortfalls at sea, and higher-end training are at levels we haven’t seen in years.

To be frank, we did not initially respond well to this injection of cash. Our systems and processes were not optimized for speed in execution or for making wise investments in readiness and we remained hampered by a mindset of scarcity.

Nevertheless, after a year of lessons learned and unrelenting focus on process improvements, and greater sense of urgency on the heels of our first National Defense Strategy in more than a decade, we’re now seeing concrete progress where leaders are thinking differently, planning for the future, and owning readiness again. I’m encouraged by the dialogue with private industry, especially our shipyards. We – industry, fleet planners, NAVSEA, OPNAV – have to be on the same page if we are going to meet fleet needs. On time and on budget is a two-way street and a partnership is the ONLY way to work down the backlog, improve reliability and establish configuration control.

We all know that great power competition on the free and open seas that the US Navy defends every day IS BACK IN PLAY.

Over the past two years, we’ve relearned tough lessons on just how unforgiving the sea can be when we aren’t on our game.

Leaders up and down the chain, have re-establish what our standards should be as a force. We’re no longer accepting degraded equipment as “just the price for doing business.” We’ve eliminated waivers and extensions for warfare certifications and consolidated readiness accountability and responsibility under the TYCOMs. As a result, we’re deploying our ships only when our teams are ready for combat.

However, standards are only the minimum baseline of requirements, and requirements do not win wars. People do.

Average teams set rules while champions rise to the standards they set for themselves, practicing and competing every single day until excellence becomes second nature.

ATLANTIC OCEAN (Aug. 30, 2018) Ships from the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group assume formation for a photo exercise in support of dual-carrier sustainment and qualification operations with the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72). U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Michael Chen/Released)

Restoring readiness, trust in chain of command

Warfighting readiness is solely about our Commanding Officers and their Sailors having confidence in this massive enterprise. We’re restoring trust up and, most importantly, down the chain of command.

Tangible evidence of progress includes: restoring focus on core proficiencies like “Drive the Ship” and team communications, creating continuous feedback loop Surface Warriors, and reducing unnecessary reporting and training requirements to give our COs time back to grow and develop their teams.

To be brutally honest, Surface Warfare is not alone in this endeavor. Every community has had to dig deep, to take a hard look internally, and renew a focus on mission.

Traveling around the Fleet, it’s clear that Sailors are thinking hard about our readiness to fight, to go to sea, and to be ready to answer the nation’s call. There is renewed energy about doing things the right way, re-establishing good habits.

Simply raising the bar and doing things better than we’ve done for some time – and ultimately better than ever.

Our confidence is steadily building – and that confidence is essential in an uncertain world.

The Surface Force has set us on a course for deep warfighting wholeness. Our Naval Aviation, Submarine force and the Shore and Information Domains, are tracking along similar water-ways.

MEDITERRANEAN SEA (May 23, 2018) Ensign Matthew Moeller, left, assigned to the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78), trains Midshipmen 1st Class Marco Patzy while standing conning officer watch on the bridge, May 23, 2018. Porter is forward-deployed to Rota, Spain, on its fifth patrol in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations in support of U.S. national security interests in Europe and Africa. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Ford Williams/Released)

Adapt to win

Let me wrap this up by talking about professionalism.

Part of the great value of symposiums like this, is where young and seasoned operators join up in frank and open dialogue.

Like many of our most important endeavors, the best place to start is to admit we don’t have all the answers. The further out you look, the more opaque the picture.

So if you don’t see progress or sense improvements, speak up…challenge us to get better faster… because if we are truly going to put the throttle to flank, this must be a “top-down” and “bottom-up” effort.

One of our biggest challenges is determining how we position ourselves in a world where everything is moving faster than the way our system was built to respond and anticipate.

How do we convert our analog Navy into a digital Navy as a force multiplier?

The answers lie in our collective intuition, experiences, and imagination, as well as in our ability to learn individually, as teams, and as an organization. Our collective agility is what sets us above the competition; it allows us to continue to adapt and thrive to the things we can’t readily see.

Our ability to own the fight of the future rests in the power of our amazing people. To achieve a more ready, fast and capable Navy, we have to challenge ourselves to think differently, to place our mission, our future, and our purpose as American Sailors above all else.

It’s believing in our Sailors’ ingenuity, intellect, and courage to innovate. To reflexively support, rather than chide, when they make mistakes. To embrace the pace of change to push our collective frontier out further and it’s about proving by our actions, in addition to our words, that our success depends on their imagination.

For our reliance upon their ability to create, to think critically, to imagine the future unknown is truly the only certainty of tomorrow.

 

http://navylive.dodlive.mil/2019/01/15/surface-reflections/ U.S. Navy

Sea Control by Design

By Vice Adm. Tom Rowden
Commander, Naval Surface Forces

“The U.S. Navy exists to control the sea.”
– Vice Adm. “Hank” Mustin

These were the words Vice Adm. “Hank” Mustin told the USS Miller (FF 1091) wardroom 37 years ago. His guidance to the officers that day would have a profound effect on me, serving as a rhumb line throughout my career. His words are as applicable today as they were nearly four decades ago.

As the Surface Warfare community gathers this week for the annual Surface Navy Association’s National Symposium, I can’t help but reflect upon the evolution of the maritime security environment. We are seeing increased competition for resources and deeper economic ties across the globe, making our Navy and Surface Force more important and relevant than ever. The rapid pace of change in technology and information is light years ahead of when I met Adm. Mustin as a midshipman aboard Miller during my first class cruise. Today’s midshipmen – tomorrow’s leaders – have access to information and technology that we never thought possible 37 years ago, and yet, the challenges they face in the world are similar in character. At the heart of the matter, capability and capacity to impose sea control when and where it matters remains timeless.

To this end, as we have been formalizing the principles of “Distributed Lethality” (DL) in the community, we’ve held true to the idea that as more complex and sophisticated challenges arise, we’ll need the time, training, and resources to keep pace with peer and near-peer competitors in the world. DL asserts that if we make each surface ship more lethal and resilient, it causes potential adversaries a variety of operational problems – problems that force such challengers to dilute their available resources and cause them to allocate a finite number of weapons across a larger number of targets. Indeed, to remain the most powerful Navy, we must constantly adapt to prevail in a new environment of peer-on-peer competition.

No other component of the American military arsenal is more closely connected with the nation’s economic vitality than that of the Surface Force. Twenty-five percent of all U.S. jobs are directly or indirectly tied to global trade; sea control is a must. Our country needs a powerful, forward deployed, lethal, and resilient Surface Force as an integral part of the Navy’s unique role of providing global freedom of the seas.

The Distributed Lethality narrative, which has helped to enhance our ship’s lethality and resilience, as seen by increased emphasis on offensive weapons on ships, really was the underpinning for the Surface Force Strategy, which we released a year ago. The strategy is a coherent approach to the Tactics, Talent, Tools, and Training necessary to achieve the key elements in the Chief of Naval Operation’s Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority vision and places sea control as a central tenet to why we have a Navy. We plotted a course for the community to improve warfighting capabilities and to develop our people.

That being said, maintaining our warfighting edge and achieving our future goals relies on executing the basics of navigation and seamanship. That was not the case in 2017; simply put, it was a tragic year for the Surface Force. Our ships had with two collisions resulting in the loss of 17 American Sailors – their families remain in our hearts. In light of these preventable incidents, our community warranted close examination.

SASEBO, Japan (Sept. 25, 2017) Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander of Naval Surface Forces, speaks with Sailors assigned to the Avenger-class mine countermeasure ships USS Patriot (MCM 7), USS Pioneer (MCM 9), USS Warrior (MCM 10) and USS Chief (MCM 14) during an all-hands call on the pier at Fleet Activities Sasebo. Rowden was visiting Fleet Activities Sasebo, home of U.S. 7th Fleet’s forward-deployed amphibious ships, to better understand forward-deployed readiness challenges and to discuss the role of the new Naval Surface Group Western Pacific organization. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Crouch/Released)
SASEBO, Japan (Sept. 25, 2017) Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander of Naval Surface Forces, speaks with Sailors assigned to the Avenger-class mine countermeasure ships USS Patriot (MCM 7), USS Pioneer (MCM 9), USS Warrior (MCM 10) and USS Chief (MCM 14) during an all-hands call on the pier at Fleet Activities Sasebo. Rowden was visiting Fleet Activities Sasebo, home of U.S. 7th Fleet’s forward-deployed amphibious ships, to better understand forward-deployed readiness challenges and to discuss the role of the new Naval Surface Group Western Pacific organization. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Crouch/Released)

 

The ensuing comprehensive review (CR) revealed that we must take our bearings from time-tested truths regarding our standards. It shed light on five key areas: fundamentals, teamwork, operational safety, assessments, and culture. We own our achievements and failures in these areas and have been aggressively working to improve them.

Leading into the CR, we had already tackled some issues through Ready for Sea Assessments of forward deployed and deploying ships; the establishment of the Pacific Fleet Detachment Naval Surface Group Western Pacific; and implementation of circadian rhythm watchbills and shipboard routines. The CR’s scope and depth highlighted further changes that will require additional time and resources in order to not only restore our legacy, but to also positively transform the force’s culture to one where emphasis is placed on mastery vice sufficiency. Our Sailors deserve to have all of the resources they need – which includes, and are not limited to, access to the right tools, planned and sustainable training periods, and time – in order to obtain and maintain warfighting and ship driving proficiency and sufficiency. As you read this blog, approximately 20 percent of the 58 CR initiatives have been accomplished. However, much work remains to be done. This is not a check the block exercise; this is a change in the Surface Warfare culture that will make us a better fighting force – ready to tackle the challenges of today and tomorrow.

I am confident that the Navy leadership team will find successful solutions to the remaining problems identified by the CR. This is an all hands effort that requires lasting commitment and resources. I encourage everyone to be active participants and to practice patience as our Navy and Surface Force make the necessary changes. To quote the CR, “Everyone, from the most junior Sailor to the commanding officer, has an obligation to use their voice to provide forceful backup when they see a deviation from procedure or dangerous situation developing.” From these tragedies, we will become better mariners and warfighters. A strong demand signal for the Surface Force will continue, as will the evolution of its future capabilities.

PHILIPPINE SEA (Aug. 22, 2017) A harpoon missile launches from the missile deck of the littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS 4) off the coast of Guam. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kaleb R. Staples/Released)
PHILIPPINE SEA (Aug. 22, 2017) A harpoon missile launches from the missile deck of the littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS 4) off the coast of Guam. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kaleb R. Staples/Released)

 

I am excited about our operational advancements. Thanks to significant progress made in 2017, our ships are harder to find, harder to kill, and more lethal. Recent Surface Force innovations include missiles that allow enemy ships to be killed at greater range (e.g. Maritime Tomahawk Land-Attack Missile, USS John P. Jones Standard Missile-6 testing), offensive enhancements to existing ships (e.g. USS Coronado firing a Harpoon Over-the-Horizon Missile), networking approaches to integrating the Marine Corps F-35B with our Aegis fleet and attacking land-based targets from amphibious ships at sea (e.g. USS Anchorage utilizing High Mobility Artillery Rocket System).

As I attend this year’s SNA symposium I try to think about what our Navy will be like 35 years from now. I want to look back at some of the things we’ve done the past decade and see how these innovations and advancements have set us on a path to be the dominant Surface Force I know we will be in the future. I am and will always be extremely proud to be a Surface Warfare Officer. It has been a privilege to be part of a truly outstanding group of professionals – the U.S. Navy’s Surface Warfare community!

SASEBO, Japan (Sept. 25, 2017) Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces, addresses Sailors during an all-hands call in the ship’s hangar bay of the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6). Rowden was visiting Fleet Activities Sasebo, home of the 7th Fleet’s forward-deployed amphibious ships, to better understand forward-deployed readiness challenges and to discuss the role of the new command Naval Surface Group Western Pacific organization. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Cosmo Walrath/Released)
SASEBO, Japan (Sept. 25, 2017) Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces, addresses Sailors during an all-hands call in the ship’s hangar bay of the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6). Rowden was visiting Fleet Activities Sasebo, home of the 7th Fleet’s forward-deployed amphibious ships, to better understand forward-deployed readiness challenges and to discuss the role of the new command Naval Surface Group Western Pacific organization. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Cosmo Walrath/Released)

http://navylive.dodlive.mil/2018/01/08/sea-control-by-design/ U.S. Navy