USA: NMLC Celebrates 119th Birthday of Navy Chief Petty Officers

NMLC Celebrates 119th Birthday of Navy Chief Petty Officers

Naval Medical Logistics Command (NMLC), located on Fort Detrick in Frederick, Md., celebrated the 119th birthday of Navy Chief Petty Officers with a cake cutting ceremony April 2.

The Navy officially created the rank of chief petty officer in 1893. Since then, chiefs have been charged with the duties and responsibilities of ensuring Sailors are trained and ready to carry out the Navy’s missions when called upon.

“The Navy needs the leadership of chief petty officers as a guide to enforce the standards and set the example of our Navy core values of honor, courage and commitment,” said Capt. James B. Poindexter, III, Naval Medical Logistics Command’s commanding officer. It is often said that the chief petty officer is the backbone of the Navy. Their mission, vision and guiding principles are forged in a tradition of CPO Leadership, which is unique only to those who have walked the deck plates in this coveted role.

Command Master Chief David L. Hall (FMF), echoed the captain’s sentiments.

“It is a great hallmark of the Navy to recognize those who make up the backbone of this service,” Hall said. “No other military service recognizes the accomplishments of an individual being promoted to the pay grade of E-7 and no other service bestows the prestige and respect upon those who obtain this rank as in the United States Navy.”

It was April 1, 1893 that Navy General Order 409 of Feb. 25, 1893, established the rate of chief petty officer. The legacy lives on 119 years later.

“Chiefs are the backbone of the Navy and they provide a tremendous amount of leadership and mentorship to Sailors and junior officers,” said Lt. Cmdr. Lydia Robinson, NMLC’s diversity officer. “The reason their role is so important is they lead the Navy in the direction it is headed. Chiefs also provide Sailors with the foresight to what they should aspire to achieve in their journey of becoming a chief petty officer. Chiefs also give officers a better appreciation for all that they do.”

Chief Hospital Corpsman (SW/AW) John A. McGilvery, the program’s coordinator said, “The chief petty officer has been engrained in naval history for more than a century as the cornerstone for leadership and sought after for guidance from Sailors all over the world on land, air and sea. Our job is to provide mentorship, knowledge and insight, as well as discipline to develop our Sailors so that they can be the very best they can be personally and professionally.”

In honor of the chief petty officers’ 119th Birthday, the United States Navy Memorial unveiled a new exhibit to support the nationwide celebration of the Year of the chief. The exhibit, on display from April 2, 2012 through March 2013, will depict chief life, work, history and accomplishments through historical artifacts, art and imagery.

Naval Today Staff , April 04, 2012; Image: navy