Friday, October 31, 2014

A Naval officer who won't lead has no advantage over one who can't lead.
Captain Samuel Langhorne Clemens

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Last note from MCPON conference with 100+ Master Chiefs

On social media:

"People (Sailors) are information hungry, and that's the world we live in, that's the world that communication is so key to," said Rear Admiral Dawn Cutler - Chief of Navy Information. "So we need to know it, we need to understand it, we need to teach our Sailors how to use it responsibly, and we all need to embrace it from the leadership level as a great tool to talk to our various audiences." 

From NavyNews HERE

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I like this from the Defense Entrepreneurs Forum

“Agile learners are motivated, and look for opportunities for self-development in order to prepare for the challenges they may face in the future. Later, when they are in challenging, complex, ambiguous situations leaders that are agile learners are able to rapidly apply what they have learned from their self- development. They quickly try new approaches, learning from the consequences, and taking action to continue on and continue learning from the experience.” 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

A nice bit of work by one of our Shipmates - LT Jason Knudson

You can read his article on the Defense Entrepreneurs Forum HERE.

Find out what he's up to in the CNO's Rapid Innovation Cell HERE in their weekly Apple PODCASTs.

As LT Knudson says, "INNOVATE HARD!"

Monday, October 27, 2014

Admiral Michelle Howard to the Master Chief Leadership Mess Symposium

Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Mike Stevens began his annual Leadership Mess Symposium in Suffolk, Virginia, October 21, which included more than 100 fleet, force, and flag-level command master chiefs.

The symposium is designed to be a forum for the Navy's top enlisted leaders to come together to hear about current issues, programs and practices from MCPON and other senior leaders. 

Admiral Howard spoke on three topics - three cultures - that are a high priority for her: gender integration, cyber, and ethics.

"Those are the three things I want to talk to you about today," said Howard. "And what's great is they are three things that cut across the fleet, they cut across the Armed Forces and literally they are issues that cut across America and the folks we bring into the Navy." 

"Probably the hardest challenge leaders have is taking ownership of themselves, and making sure that they are always positive examples, that they always have this great attitude and that they control themselves."

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The things you do for your Sailors

The things you do for yourself last as long as you do, but the things you do for your Sailors remain as your legacy, forever. 
"Communication shouldn't start when you're concerned about a shipmate or when someone is getting ready to leave for a new duty station. In order to have meaningful communication there must be trust, which is built over time. Remember to take a moment and ask your shipmates how things are going-and actively listen. Through simple acts of kindness, you can be there for "every Sailor, every day." From NAVYNEWS or Captain Monty Ashliman, NAS Lemoore

Saturday, October 25, 2014


On completion of your first year as Officer in Charge of Navy Information Operations Detachment Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii.  BZ !

Friday, October 24, 2014

We (cryptologists/Information Warfare Officers) don't do that

How often do you hear "we don't do that" when you ask about some new possibility, idea, mission, career opportunity or function?

I had a breakfast discussion with a Shipmate in D.C. recently and we talked about possibilities.

We talked about the 1610 who wanted to be an astronaut - but we don't do that.  Until Captain Ellis A. Fiedtkou-Leonard did.

We talked about the 1610 who wanted to fly as a linguist in the EA-6B - but we don't do that.  Until CDR Mike Makfinsky did.

We talked about the 1610 who wanted to work on the Vice President's staff - but we don't do that.  Until Captain Rich Wilhelm did.

We talked about the 1610 who wanted to be the Naval Attache to Moscow - but we don't do that.  Until Captain Dick Hutchinson did.

We talked about the 1610 and CTI2 females who wanted to fly in EP-3s - but we don't do that.  Until LT Barb Doyne and CTI2 Nancy Johnson did.

We talked about the 1610 who wanted to be the Naval Attache to South Korea - but we don't do that.  Until CDR Jim Kim converted to FAO and made Captain and did.

We talked about the potential for an IW officer to be a Vice Admiral - but we don't have a 3 star billet to fill.  Until Vice Admiral Michael Rogers filled it.  (Now we have a 3 star and a 4 star.)

We talked about the CTICS who wanted to be a regular contributor to USNI Proceedings magazine - but we don't do that.  Until for the first time in the 138 year old history of the magazine, CTICS Jim Murphy did.

Don't let "WE don't do that" keep YOU from doing it!

Help me out with your own "We don't do that" comment below.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Captain Howie Ehret - the Cryptologic Community's Rickover (without the obnoxious behavior)

Howie's Shipmates - Rusty Smith, H Winsor Whiton & Jerome Rapin attend.
Captain Howie Ehret was one of five Cryptologists Added to NSA/CSS Cryptologic Hall of Honor

FORT MEADE, MD-Five "cryptologic greats" were inducted into the NSA/CSS Cryptologic Hall of Honor today at the National Cryptologic Museum (NCM). Rick Ledgett, Deputy Director of the National Security Agency, presided over the ceremony and highlighted the distinguished achievements of each of the inductees.  This is the only one that interests me.
  • Captain Howard Ehret: A modern pioneer in U.S. Naval cryptology - namely "Naval Cryptology's Rickover" - who brought state-of-the-art technology to naval operations and standardized naval cryptologic work roles and education to change the culture of naval cryptology and reduce the threat of enemies to the U.S.
To learn more about this legendary figure, I have blogged about him:

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

I'm a (s)quid and I'm a pro quo, also

Nice post by Captain Sean R. Heritage over HERE.

I'm very much a giver (quid) as described in Sean's post.  But I am also big on the pro quo piece,  but only in the sense that when I give you something, I expect you to give something back - in a "pay it forward" kind of way.  I also want a sense your understanding of what you have received and WHY you received it.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

A Genuine Officer and A Gentleman

Happy Birthday Rear Admiral Eugene S. Ince Jr!

On this date in 1926, Eugene St. Clair Ince Jr. was born to Eugene and Jay Green Ince. He is an only child. The love of his life, Jean Marion Gregory Ince passed on 12 January 2009. Theirs was a love story that lasted a lifetime. His proposal to Jean is truly legendary and their story has been featured in Gourmet Magazine and many others. They were married on 8 June 1949 in Oak Park, Illinois following his graduation from the United States Naval Academy-Annapolis, Maryland.

Admiral Ince was a Naval Aviator. During the Korean War, he deployed with VA-115 in USS PHILIPPINE SEA and USS KEARSARGE. He had 128 successful carrier 'traps'. Following the Korean War, he was a flight instructor. He attended the Naval Postgraduate School (Naval Intelligence) and the Defense Language Institute (Russian) in Monterey, California. In June 1960 he changed designators from 1310 (Naval Aviator) to 1610 (Special Duty- Cryptology). From 1966-1968, he was the Commanding Officer of NSGA Skaggs Island. He went on to become the Operations Officer (G50) for Naval Security Group Command and the Deputy OP944B at OPNAV.

He served as Commander, Naval Security Group Command from August 1978 to September 1980.

Today, he's living the good life in Madison, Virginia.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

This timely note from Hugh MacLeod at GAPING VOID

You're sitting in a meeting and the guy next you is getting torn apart by the department head. His project strategy is being ripped to shreds, every weakness exposed.  You feel a little bad for the guy, sure, but mostly, you're grateful.

You're grateful everyone at the table cares enough to bring their work in and hold it up to intense scrutiny. That your co-workers are about doing amazing work, not ego.

You're grateful that when the same project comes up the next week - stronger and better- that the guy sitting next you gets congratulated for turning it around.

Real honesty isn't always pleasant. But nothing means anything without it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Tomorrow's FCC/C10F VTC on their Strategic Planning Process

I don't know if they were messing with me or not but I was told this shot of Steve Jobs was sent out to all of the briefers as a heads up in advance of the Strategic Plan VTC for VADM Tighe tomorrow at FCC/C10F.

I do like the idea of NO POWERPOINT !!  Don't use KEYNOTE, either !!

Someone at the brief, please let us know if PP was used.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Fleet Cyber Command/TENTH Fleet Goals 2011 versus 2015

Goal 1 – Operations – Conduct full spectrum cyberspace operations in support of Navy, Joint and National missions

Goal 2 – Force Shaping – Shape the Navy’s cyber workforce that supports and satisfies Navy, Joint and National missions

Goal 3 – Capabilities and Requirements – Provide Navy cyberspace capabilities to support Navy, Joint and National missions

Goal 1: Assure Mission Systems for Navy Command and Control (C2)

Goal 2: Provide Tailored Signals Intelligence

Goal 3: Deliver Warfighting Effects Through Cyberspace

Goal 4: Create Shared Cyber Situational Awareness

Goal 5: Establish and Mature Navy’s Cyber Mission Forces

Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Power of a Note

By Joe Byerly

Tonight I read an article in the Army Times titled Nearly Half of Soldiers say Army isn’t committed to them and for whatever reason it made me think of a handwritten note I received almost 10 years ago from my Battalion Commander.

It reads:

2LT__________ I just want to thank you for all the hard work you have done over the last several months. You have shown great initiative and aggressiveness in all the tasks assigned to you. You have made a tremendous impact not only on your Troop but also in the Squadron. Your efforts are not going unnoticed. I am not saying by me only. I am saying that your men notice what you do and the professionalism that you exhibit. It is refreshing to see young LTs like you, knowing that you are going to be one hell of a leader! Keep it up! _________ 6

I’m not sure I still have all of the Army memorabilia that I’ve acquired over the years, but I’ve still kept that note. I keep it as a reminder that a small act, something as simple as a handwritten correspondence, can let a junior leader know that his or her service and sacrifices are appreciated. It probably only took him 10-15 minutes to do it, but it still resonates with me almost a decade later. To many junior leaders the microcosm of their unit (Brigade and below) is the Army, and if we show them that we care and are committed to them, in their eyes the Army cares and is committed to them. 

I challenge anyone who reads this post to take a few minutes out of their schedule and let a subordinate know that you appreciate their efforts with a handwritten note.  Joe Byerly

Read more From the Green Notebook HERE.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Our Navigator for Today - John Maxwell

The Law of Navigation – Anyone Can Steer the Ship, but It Takes a Leader to Chart the Course.

First-rate navigators always have in mind that other people are depending on them and their ability to chart a good course.

Before good leaders take their people on a journey, they go through a process in order to give the trip the best chance of being a success:
  • Navigators Draw on Past Experience – every past success and failure you’ve experienced can be a valuable source of information and wisdom. Success teaches you what you’re capable of doing and gives you confidence. However, your failures can often teach greater lessons, if you allow them to. If you fail to learn from your mistakes, you’re going to fail again and again.
  • Navigators Examine the Conditions Before Making Commitments – No good leader plans a course of action without paying attention to current conditions. Good navigators count the cost before making commitments for themselves and others.
  • Navigators Listen To What Others Have to Say – Navigating leaders get ideas from many sources. They listen to members of their leadership team. They spend time with leaders of other organizations who can mentor them. They always think in terms of relying on a team, not just themselves.
  • Navigators Make Sure Their Conclusions Represent Both Faith and Fact – A leader has to possess a positive attitude. If you can’t confidently make the trip in your mind, you’re not going to be able to take it in real life. On the other hand, you also have to be able to see the facts realistically. If you don’t go in with your eyes wide open, you’re going to get blindsided. Balancing optimism and realism, faith and fact can be very difficult.

Charting A Course with A Navigation Strategy – here’s an acrostic that the author used repeatedly in his leadership.

  • Predetermine a course of action. 
  • Lay out your goals.
  • Adjust your priorities.
  • Notify key personnel.
  • Allow time for acceptance. 
  • Head into action.
  • Expect problems.
  • Always point to the successes. 
  • Daily review your plan.

The secret to the Law of Navigation is preparation. When you prepare well, you convey confidence and trust to people. Leaders who are good navigators are capable of taking their people just about anywhere. 

Thursday, October 9, 2014

U.S. Fleet Cyber Command/U.S. TENTH Fleet Strategic Plan

VADM Barry McCullough's Strategic Plan for Fleet Cyber Command (HERE) is due for a refresh and VADM Jan E. Tighe's staff is working on a tight timeline to deliver a new strategy by 21 November according to a e-mail to her Commanding Officers, Assistant Chiefs of Staff and Special Assistants. It's an ambitious schedule and delivery of the final product is in the very capable hands of Captain Roy Petty (FCC/C10F N5) and ELG (contractor).

For those who have an interest, the schedule looks something like this.

Strategic Plan Development Timeline:
- 15 Oct:  VTC with Leaders providing key information on the Strategic Plan initiative and Q&A
- 17 Oct:  Inputs received from Leaders on Draft Strategic Plan
- 31 Oct:  SME's have fleshed out areas where additional detail is required
- 07 Nov:  N5 provides smooth Draft Strategic Plan to ELG
- 14 Nov:  ELG provides smooth Draft Strategic Plan to VADM Tighe
- 21 Nov:  FCC/C10F Strategic Plan released

The Framework for the new Strategic Plan was distributed to COs, ACOSs and SAs but I don't have a copy available for your review.  Check with your command leadership for more information.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Shipmate Linnea Sommer-Weddington Promoted to Rear Admiral

From Navy News:

CORONADO, Calif. (NNS) -- Capt. Linnea J. Sommer-Weddington was promoted to rear admiral (lower half) during a ceremony at Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado, California, Oct. 4.

"Becoming a flag officer was not anything I set out to do," Sommer-Weddington said. "My aim always was to accomplish the mission, do my best in whatever assignment I had and leave things a bit better."

According to Master Chief Cryptologic Technician (technical) Kristie Barbier, a senior enlisted leader at Information Dominance Corps (IDC) Midwest, leaving things a bit better than when she found them is exactly what Sommer-Weddington did throughout her career. Barbier said she views her as a true mentor who showed her and others there are no roadblocks to success -- even for women.

Not even a bout with cancer slowed her down. In 2008, Sommer-Weddington was diagnosed with breast cancer. With the support of friends, family, and colleagues, she battled her disease while still staying in command. She is now in remission.  

Guest speaker Rear Adm. James Plehal praised the Navy's newest admiral and discussed her success as a leader with more than 25 years of experience. 

"From the beginning she proved that you don't have to be a grandstander, you don't have to be shrill to be heard, you don't have to sell out to compromise, you don't have to be a cut throat person to get ahead (nor) somebody who sucks all the air out of the room in order to be strong and effective leader," said Plehal.

Plehal went on to say that Sommer-Weddington is the first female reserve officer to carry a star on her shoulder boards as commander, Information Dominance Corps (IDC) Southwest. She is among only a handful of female flag officers who serve in the Navy today.

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced Sommer-Weddinton's nomination in July.

A New Jersey native, Sommer-Weddington graduated with a Bachelor of Science from Slippery Rock State College, Pennsylvania, before enlisting in the Navy as a cryptologic technician interpretive seaman. She became a Russian linguist during the end of the Cold War era and left active duty as a petty officer second class in 1986. Sommer-Weddington returned two years later as a commissioned officer in the Navy Reserve. She earned her Master of Business Administration from Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina, in 1996. 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Recently (over)heard in the passageway at Fort Meade

Chief, "What we have here, sir, is a failure to communicate. They are not getting the message."
Captain, "Well, send them my e-mail, again."

Monday, October 6, 2014

One of the secrets

"Sir, one of the many secrets of good leadership lies in respecting those Sailors that you are privileged to lead."

Advice to a young JO from a salty old Chief Petty Officer.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Charted course? Aimless drifting?

As a leader, you are either diligently sailing toward one or more objectives consistent with your charted course or you are drifting aimlessly. Drifting aimlessly is the sure path to shoal waters. The choice is entirely up to you and your navigation team!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Saying thanks

A hand-written note – This simple, seemingly outdated means of communications is still one of the most powerful, and universally appreciated forms of recognition. Throughout my career, I’ve been amazed at the reception I get from writing short notes of appreciation. I don’t write enough of these! P.S. An email is not the same as a personal note.

From Mark Miller
Author of The Secret

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Commanding Officer, Center for Information Dominance

Captain Maureen Fox is a native of New Castle, Del. She was commissioned as a General Unrestricted Line Officer upon graduation from the United States Naval Academy in 1991. Following her graduate work at the Defense Intelligence College, she was designated a Naval Intelligence Officer in 1993.

A qualified Information Dominance Corps (IDC) officer, she has served in numerous joint, afloat and shore operational intelligence assignments. 

Significant afloat assignments include Intelligence Systems officer, USS Nimitz (CVN 68); Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Commander, Amphibious Strike Group 3 aboard USS Peleliu (LHA 5) and USS Boxer (LHD 4); and plank-owning N2 for Carrier Strike Group 1 aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70). She has conducted multiple extended combat deployments at sea supporting every United States numbered fleet, directing operational intelligence support to missions as varied as combat strike in Iraq and Afghanistan, counter-piracy in the Gulf of Aden, theater engagement in South America, power projection in the Pacific, and disaster response in Haiti.

Ashore, Fox served as Defense Intelligence Agency’s Congressional Liaison to the House Permanent Select Committee for Intelligence; Executive Assistant to the Director for Intelligence on the Joint Staff; Intelligence Liaison to Deputy Director for Regional Operations, Joint Staff J3; Director for Intelligence, Tactical Training Group, Pacific; Senior Analyst and Intelligence Briefer, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, Bahrain; Deputy Director, Maritime Intelligence Operations Center, Commander, Third Fleet; Intelligence Systems and Training Officer, Commander U.S. Pacific Fleet, Intelligence Readiness Cell; and Instructor, Fleet Intelligence Training Center; and Force Intelligence Officer for Commander, Naval Special Warfare.

In September 2014 Fox became the Commanding Officer of the Center for Information Dominance based at Corry Station in Pensacola, Fla.

Fox’s awards and decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four gold stars) and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (four gold stars.)