Thursday, August 11, 2011

Diminished ? - I don't think so.

A great Shipmate of mine (Captain Bryan Lopez) and former Commanding Officer of Navy Information Operations Command San Diego was recently selected as a Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) (formerly Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Corporation (HENAAC)) Luminary for 2011.

When I saw that he won this award, I wanted to feel great pride for him and his family.  Instead, I feel like the award has diminished the nature of his service by allowing some to try to put him and this achievement in the "diversity box".  Do NOT put Bryan in a box.

Don't get me wrong, Bryan is a rockstar.  I'm sure that he's proud of his Hispanic heritage (I am VERY proud to be part of a great Hispanic family myself), but he and his accomplishments (and those of his Lopez family) long ago put to rest the idea of any limitation on the levels of achievement they might reach.  Captain Clyde Lopez was the most respected Inspector General and Captain the Naval Security Group during his time on active duty.  He continues to serve as a civilian today.  Bryan is in that mold.

My Shipmates and I are very proud of Bryan and his achievements over his long and distinguished career.  His family name, alone, is legendary in our community and he brings great honor to it along with the rest of his Lopez family - Clyde, Barbara, Phil, Bryan's sons and daughters, and others.  He is a STANDOUT performer in EVERY environment.  He is a qualified Naval Aviation Observer and Information Dominance Warfare officer, former commanding officer, current executive officer, acquisition expert, mentor, Shipmate, Sailor, and superb husband, father, grandfather and a hundred other things beyond a STEM Luminary for 2011.

Don't put Bryan or his achievements in the "diversity box" - He's in a class of his own - as good as any; better than most and often simply - THE BEST.  I salute you Bryan.  And, so do your Shipmates !!


Proud of Diversity said...

By your very actions you did put him in a box. Embrace diversity - also embrace different ways to recognize diversity and achievments. I get it - you don't like these types of diversity awards. But they serve a good purpose and helping us all move in the right direction.

CAPT Dave Clement said...

I flew many a mission with Brian and have the utmost respect for him. He is a great American.

Darren Seibert, CTA1, USN Retired said...

I couldn't agree more with CAPT Lambert statements here. I served under both CAPT Lopez's during my tenure and they are truly cut from the same mold. The unique thing about both of them was that no matter what was going on around then, they made each Sailor, regardless as to pay-grade, feel as though they were the most important person in the room. Well deserved for any recognition, diversity or non-diversity...BZ Shipmate!

Curtis said...


How not in this pathetic environment?

There were better candidates but we were compelled to choose the least foul?

It is just exactly how it works. You may dream your little dream but we reckon merit counts, not race.

Anonymous said...

Still waiting for the Straight, White, and Male Achievement award.

Anonymous said...

If anyone put him in this 'box' it was the 'diversity people', not you Captain (they created the box).
The only direction the 'diversity people' are moving this country is in the direction of division. They are moving the decisions regarding the competence to conduct war into the realm of quotas based on race/gender not competence to fight.
War/national security is too serious a business to be based on diversity.

Anonymous said...


The only people supporting the diversity claimancy are those who are in it. Hyper-awareness of diversity does not fix the myriad issues face the military in general or the Navy in particular.

What do we, as an organization, gain by denoting race, national origin, or sex in awards over just outstanding officers and Sailors? By pegging and limiting things to a particular sub-set of the whole you relegate it to less status.

A female Sailor that wins an award that ALL Sailors are eligible for should carry far more acclaim than one only open to female Sailors.

As long as the best are recognized why put a qualifier on it?

Kevin Goodson