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NewsAnnouncements : Sailors, Soldier Pinned As NMNCR’s New CPOs

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Sailors, Soldier Pinned As NMNCR’s New CPOs

09/22/2017

By Bernard S. Little

WRNMMC Command Communications

Navy Medicine National Capital Region welcomed 16 Sailors and an Army Soldier to the chief petty officer ranks during a pinning ceremony at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Sept. 15.
The Sailors, wearing crisp, new khaki uniforms while the Soldier, looking just a sharp in the Army Class B uniform of a white shirt and blue pants with a yellow stripe lining the sides, were pinned with their anchors and welcomed by their mentors into their proud ranks of the Chief’s Mess during the ceremony.
Navy Rear Adm. Terry Moulton, the Navy’s deputy surgeon general and deputy chief of the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, served as guest speaker at the pinning ceremony. An honorary chief since 2014, Moulton called the CPO pinning “a big day and the last of six weeks of initiation.” He added the CPO training process “is about teamwork, [self-evaluation] and learning about the expectations of being a chief.”
Moulton added his dad, who was an Air Force senior master sergeant, told him when the younger Moulton first joined the Navy, “Find a good chief, and the chief will help you along the way.”
Navy Capt. (Dr.) Mark A. Kobelja, WRNMMC director, agreed, adding he was shaped by, and “is the officer he is today,” because of the mentoring of Navy chief petty officers.
“I’ve been very fortunate in my career to have had some outstanding chiefs who took me under their wings and helped guide me along the way,” Moulton furthered. He said one of the many things those chiefs had in common were that they cared about Sailors and would not hesitate to give them feedback. “I expect that of each one of you,” he conveyed to the new chief petty officers.
The Navy deputy surgeon general also offered the new CPOs the following advice: “Make sure your Sailors are ready to go to sea and deployable; choose your words wisely; always take care of your troops (help them succeed and they will help you); delegate (you cannot do it all on your own); always give clear expectations; follow-up and close the loop; motivate and inspire those that you lead; allow your Sailors to succeed through empowerment; plan for and help your Sailors achieve the Navy’s goals; lead by example (walk the walk and not just talk the talk); be fair, be firm and be a compassionate leader, always; don’t hesitate the ask the Chief’s Mess for help (you don’t have to know all of the answers, but you do need know where to find them, and this is a team effort); continue to plan your career (it only gets more competitive from here); autograph your work with excellence (because it’s a reflection of you); and take time to thank your family, your Sailors and your mentors.”
After the new CPOs were pinned with their anchors by their family members, mentors and friends, Chief Hospital Corpsman Jonathan Kitchen read them the CPO Creed.
“Your entire way of life has now changed,” Kitchen stated. “More will be expected of you. More will be demanded of you, not because you’re an E-7, but because now you’re a chief petty officer. You have not merely been promoted one pay grade; you have joined an exclusive fellowship, and as with all fellowships, you have a special responsibility to your comrades even as they have a special responsibility to you."
The CPO training process is a longstanding tradition unique to the Navy, but service members from other military branches can request to participate. If they successfully complete the training, they are able to participate in the pinning ceremony and be recognized as chief petty officers. The ceremony is the culmination of six-plus weeks of intense training, transformation and testing known as CPO 365 Phase II. Afterward, the new chief petty officers are accepted into the U.S. Navy Chief’s Mess, a new position of leadership and responsibility.
“I feel blessed that I was selected for chief petty officer,” stated Chief Hospital Corpsman Greggory Cannon, senior enlisted student advisor at Uniformed Services University’s Graduate School of Nursing. “I feel that all service members are not able to reach this point in their military career, and I feel honored that I have been blessed with the authority and opportunity to change lives of Sailors,” he added.
Chief Hospital Corpsman Farrah Fleury echoed those sentiments. “I feel honored [to earn chief] because of what the chief represents in the Navy,” said Fleury, leading petty officer for the Director for Administration at the Navy Medicine Professional Development Center. “Chiefs are the backbone of the Navy,” she added.
“The most rewarding part of my military career has been the incredible mentorship I have received throughout my time in the Navy. This has really molded me into who I am today,” stated new Chief Yeoman Alison Ford, executive secretary to the Deputy Surgeon General of the Navy. “I feel very honored and humbled by my recent CPO selection; this is something I have always been hoping for, but something I knew was never a guarantee.” She said her advice to other Sailors hoping to pin on the chief’s anchors one day came from one of her senior chief, who told Ford last year when she wasn’t on the CPO select list: “You keep doing what you do, do your job, take care of Sailors and continue to work well with your peers and everything will work out.”
“When we are looking to pin on anchors, we sometimes forget that there is no special formula, we have to continue to do our job and take care of people and things will fall into place,” Ford added.
Army Sgt. 1st Class Austin Stacey, the only Soldier among the group to receive the chief’s anchors, said, “I have found great joy in leading, training, mentoring and motivating Soldiers, Sailors and even non-military members to become better leaders and to achieve more than they thought possible.
“Challenge is good, [and] I have found that my greatest challenge is me,” added Stacey, senior enlisted leader for the Directorate for Medical Services at Walter Reed Bethesda. “I feel honored to have the opportunity to experience this process, and grow in many aspects to strengthen my weaknesses,” he furthered.
The other new CPOs pinned during the NMNCR ceremony included:
Chief Hospital Corpsman Mark Brown
Chief Hospital Corpsman Ronald Crawford
Chief Hospital Corpsman Clifton Hinds
Chief Yeoman Keenan Johnson Jr.
Chief Hospital Corpsman Jesse Lumm
Chief Hospital Corpsman Dametrius Mannings
Chief Hospital Corpsman Christopher Marsh
Chief Hospital Corpsman Thato Manyothwane
Chief Hospital Corpsman Tun Min
Chief Hospital Corpsman Sarah Pacquette
Chief Hospital Corpsman Melvin Rolon
Chief Hospital Corpsman Sonia Strickland
Chief Hospital Corpsman Keith Wells.