USA: Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center Changes Command

Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center Changes Command

Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center (FLEASWTRACEN) held a change of command at Naval Base Point Loma, June 4.

Capt. Scott Dugan relieved Capt. Richard Thomas as commanding officer.

Thomas assumed command of the training center in June 2011. During his tenure, he led the renewal of fleet anti-submarine warfare training by linking schoolhouse education to warships ready for tasking, and implementing the Advanced Warfare Training (AWT) program to enhance shipboard operator and maintainer proficiency.

Capt. Don Schmieley, Center for Surface Combat Systems commanding officer, spoke of Thomas’ successful tour.

 “As commanding officer, Rich positively impacted more than 220 Sailors and civilian employees, promoted more than 50 staff members, and designated almost 70 Master Training Specialists,” Schmieley said. “He re-aligned his command by seamlessly integrating the Littoral Combat Ship Training Facility, which included assuming responsibility for close to 40 civilian employees, five training simulators, and associated support spaces.”

Schmieley highlighted Thomas’ achievements while at the command.

 “He was also a very good steward of the training facility by spearheading an extensive renovation to maximize use of available space, which consolidated workspaces,” said Schmieley. “He relocated 11 courses of instruction to capitalize on training and instructor cross-utilization and greatly reduce operating costs.”

Thomas was presented the Legion of Merit, and reflected on his tour at FLEASWTRACEN.

 “Fleet ASW has a long and proud heritage of training Sailors and preparing them to sail into harm’s way, ready to search, classify and destroy the enemy if called upon, and to control the seas,” said Thomas. “There will be resource challenges, new weapons systems and platforms, changes in how training is delivered and real world events, but I urge you to remember three things as we move forward. Do the right things, do things right and mission first…people always.”

Dugan previously served on the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations Staff, Assessment Division (OPNAV N81), where he served as Sea Shield Branch Head, the Executive Assistant to the Director, and as the Warfighting Support Branch Head.

Dugan said he looks forward to working with the staff and students at FLEASWTRACEN.

 “I’m excited, grateful, and humble for the opportunity to be your commanding officer,” said Dugan. “I look forward to working with you to complete our critical mission of developing and delivering world class surface combat systems training to the fleet.”

As commanding officer of FLEASWTRACEN, Dugan assumes responsibility for the Navy’s Anti-Submarine Warfare and Combat Direction and Control Training Center of excellence. The command was established in 1960 and realigned with CSCS in 2004.

 “Rich has been an exceptional driving force at FLEASWTRACEN and a great colleague,” said Schmieley. “The University of Nebraska-Lincoln Navy Reserve Officer Training Corps will be fortunate to have Rich as their commanding officer. I’m confident he will have great success training and developing knowledgeable leaders who will positively impact the future of our Navy.”

Center for Surface Combat Systems oversees the development of surface warfare training and its headquarters’ staff oversees 14 learning sites, including FLEASWTRACEN, and provides almost 70,000 hours of curriculum and close to 700 courses a year to more than 40,000 Sailors. The training center uses a mix of blended learning comprised of instructor led classes, hands on labs, simulation and computer-based training. Courses include specialized training supporting nine enlisted ratings, Fire Controlmen, Electronic Technicians, Interior Communications, Sonar Technician (surface), Gunner’s Mates, Mineman, Operations Specialists, Boatswain’s Mates, and Quartermasters, as well as training surface warfare officers in skills required to tactically operate and employ Aegis, Ship Self Defense System (SSDS), and Tomahawk weapon system equipped ships. Building maritime partnerships, the command also provides training to many international students.

Press release, June 13, 2013; Image: FLEASWTRACEN