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Quotes

 
Leadership/Sailors/Families
"For my part, I want you to know how proud I am, incredibly proud, to have had the opportunity to serve with you these past two years and to watch you at work, just doing your jobs. Active, reserve, civilians. " (CNO Podcast, September 27, 2007)
"I believe we have the Navy the American people need. And being in touch with the American people, engaging them, listening to them about what they expect and who we are and having that conversation has been very important." (37th IFPA Fletcher Conference, Ronald Reagan Building, Washington, DC, September 26, 2007)
"I'm inspired by the opportunity -- the privilege -- to continue to lead the men and women of our Armed Forces through what will surely be, beyond Iraq, a protracted campaign that will define the quality of American life for generations to come. " (Opening Statement for Senate Committee on Armed Services Confirmation Hearing, Washington, DC, July 31, 2007)
"Can you be courteous in the face of an insult? Will you be harsh when your own treatment’s, unkind? Can you be compassionate when cruelty finds you? And will you be upright, when you or those you love are victimized? That is when you have to reach deep and take full measure of the content of your character. That is when you have to rely on your honor, your courage, your commitment, – core values that guide us in the Navy – and resolutely, persistently do the right thing. " (Southern University Commencement Speech, Baton Rouge, LA, 27 July 2007)
"Our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, Coast Guardsmen and their families are the most dedicated, talented and courageous people with whom I have ever been privileged to serve. Representing them, serving them in turn as chairman of the Joint Chiefs would be my great honor. " (Statement given after Presidential Nomination to Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Washington, DC 27 June 2007 )
"I believe an international “1000 ship navy,” offers a real opportunity to increase partner nation capabilities while reducing transnational crime, WMD proliferation, terrorism, and human trafficking." (Before the Senate Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee On Defense, 28 March 2007)
"Without the support of our families - and, without SUPPORTING them in return - we cannot hope to sustain Combat Readiness. We owe our Sailors and their families the very best Quality of Life we can offer. " (Before the Senate Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, 28 March 2007)
"Our spouses serve as we serve, every bit as much. They do not bear the arms, but their open arms provide strength and comfort. They do not set the ship's course, but their internal compass keeps the family ready and on track. They do not ford the stream or build the bridge, but the bridge they provide back to the home sustains and improves the morale and performance of entire units." (From the Military Spouse Appreciation Day message, 10 May 2007)
"No one can succeed in this business alone. No one. It is too tough, too demanding -- especially today as we continue to fight a long and treacherous war against agile forces of terror around the globe. We all need help from time to time. We all need someone to turn to for love, support, and even a little guidance. We all need a shoulder at home. For many of us that shoulder belongs to a spouse." (From the Military Spouse Appreciation Day message, 10 May 2007)
"I am convinced that family readiness is tied directly to combat readiness. Our families serve as we serve, and the ombudsman program is critical to making sure we recognize that. " (Ombudsman Appreciation Letter, 18 March 2007 )
"I am incredibly grateful for your service. Our Navy and our country are in great shape because of what young Americans like you do." " (All Hands Call, Norfolk, VA 01 May 2007)
"Every Sailor has the potential to lead. I don't care if it's a seaman recruit or someone higher ranking than myself. Where there's a will, there's a way." (All Hands Call, Norfolk, VA 01 May 2007)
"Role models can be admired and, through their actions, they can inspire us to dream. But real models have a deeper level of commitment; real models reach out, educate; engagement is sustained, not episodic." (San Fernando Valley Engineers’ Council Banquet and Awards Gala Studio City, Calif., 24 February 2007 )
"There is incredible talent in this Navy. Our Sailors have character and resolve, and hold themselves and their shipmates to high standards. I am enormously proud of them and their families and grateful for their service at this critical and dangerous time in our history." (From Supplemental Budget Supports Navy GWOT efforts, CNO tells Congress , February 15, 2007)
"I am proud of the example our Sailors, civilians -- and their families -- have set, as I am of the leadership they have demonstrated. We should feel emboldened by their courage and by the course we have taken. It is tough work, make no mistake. But our commitment to doing it has had, and will continue to have, a profound impact on the lives of countless people around the world." (From CNO’s 2007 Guidance Focuses on Execution, February 2, 2007 )
"All of us realize that education is critical both for the institution, as well as our young men and women who serve. We increased the amount to recognize that. The feedback I’ve gotten from that increase is very, very positive and we will continue to focus on it and assess it over time." (Remarks made at a town hall meeting in Millington, Tenn. Sept. 7, 2006.)
"Everyone in the Navy has the potential to lead. We have to pull that potential out of our Sailors. My emphasis is on our people, leadership and accountability. Those are three crown jewels of our Navy." (Remarks made at a town hall meeting in Millington, Tenn. Sept. 7, 2006.)
"If I were going to pick a characteristic that is most critical for the Navy in leadership, it is accountability. You need to think through, as an officer, what you believe in, and you need to make sure, particularly with what you do, that your standards are both impeccable and irrefutable and never blurred." (From remarks made at Naval Justice School, Newport, R.I., 14 June 2006 )
"It’s really a competitive advantage for our country from a security standpoint to have a Navy that is forward, can continue to rotate, provide that presence, and really as much as anything, to be able to deter a problem, not just be able to respond to a problem." (KQV (Pittsburgh) Global Press Conference with Dr. Sky Foerster, 19 May 2006)
"I would like to take just a second to say, we've got 350,000+ Sailors in uniform today around the world. They're the best Sailors I've ever been with, and as you indicated I've been around a long time. America continues to provide young people, and it's not just the Navy. It's all the services. They wear the uniform with great pride and deliver for the American people." (KQV (Pittsburgh) Global Press Conference with Dr. Sky Foerster, 19 May 2006)
"I am convinced that the most powerful way to spend your time as a leader is not in front of people, above people or on a computer or on a cell phone with people – it is down on the deck plates, as they say in the Navy, is where you can listen and learn from people. " (Grove City College Commencement, Grove City, Pa., 20 May 2006)
"In my profession, we seek leaders of character. Character that inspires trust and confidence that people can follow on the darkest night. Character which keeps you on course no matter what winds or waves try to push you toward dishonesty and doubt. " (Grove City College Commencement, Grove City, Pa., 20 May 2006)
"It's important that everybody lead well. We should all think about giving back when we are in positions of leadership. Think about a way to give back to someone. I expect everyone in the Navy to be a leader. The better the leadership is within an organization, the better the organization." (All hands call, Falluja, Iraq, 1 Jan. 2006)
"We live in a time where crisis response is required. We are going through a major crisis in this country right now. I visited with Sailors down there who are, yet again, making a big difference saving lives and showing what the Navy can bring with the resources that it has." (All Hands Call, 13 September 2005 at the Naval Submarine Base New London, Groton, Conn.)
"I emphasize -- I will always emphasize -- leadership. I think some of the most difficult problems that we have can be solved through good leadership, and in some cases solved only through good leadership." (2006 CNO's Guidance Release Media Roundtable, 13 October 2005, Pentagon, Washington, DC.)
"I believe that the chiefs run the Navy. You may think I run the Navy, but I assure you the Navy runs because of what you do. " (Addressing the Senior Enlisted Academy, Class 119, 28 July 2005 in Newport, R.I.)
"It is the formation of that whole command around the chief’s mess that really makes it all come together - CPOs form the nucleus." (Interview with Navy Times, 26 September 2005.)
"When a chiefs’ mess is hitting on all cylinders, there is no better command, and when a chiefs’ mess is not working well, there is nothing worse." (Interview with Navy Times, 26 September 2005.)
"Fundamentally, we’re going to be fit. You need to be fit to fight." (All Hands Call, 13 September 2005 at the Naval Submarine Base New London, Groton, Conn. )
"They don’t know where they’re going to live, where they’re going sleep, where their kids are going to school. The Navy is going to reach out and touch them… to make sure those families get back on their feet." (All Hands Call, 13 September 2005 at the Naval Submarine Base New London, Groton, Conn., about Navy families impacted by Hurricane Katrina )
"Since I’ve been in the Navy, we have never been in better shape from a readiness standpoint… This is the best group of Sailors I’ve ever seen, and I can say that because I’ve seen a lot of groups of Sailors. That’s what motivates me… I feel very privileged to lead." (All Hands Call, 13 September 2005 at the Naval Submarine Base New London, Groton, Conn. )
"What I tell groups of CPO selectees is that my expectation for them is to be a leader. Sure, you got there because of your skills, but now you need to be a leader. Somebody paved the way for you to make chief, and now you must return that opportunity to someone else. You need to extract that potential from your younger Sailors." (All Hands Call, 13 September 2005 at the Naval Submarine Base New London, Groton, Conn.)
"I firmly believe that every Sailor in the Navy can lead. Great leadership is what can help us achieve our goals and extract the maximum amount of potential from all of our Sailors." (All Hands Call with Jacksonville area Sailors, 18 August 2005 at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Fla.)
"I commend the new chief-selects. It is one thing to make the pay grade of E-7 and another thing entirely to become a chief petty officer. Lead your commands and encourage leadership from E-1 to my level. I take my hat off to you all for a job well done." (All Hands Call aboard USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67), 18 August 2005 at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.)
"I'm so grateful for your service and the service of your families. You're serving in one of the most critical times in our history, and you carry a significant burden four our country and you do it exceptionally well." (All Hands Call aboard USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67), 18 August 2005 at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.)
"Diversity is a leadership issue, and everyone is a leader. " (From CNO’s 2007 Guidance Focuses on Execution, February 2, 2007 )
"I've been on record saying that sustaining our readiness and building the fleet for the future are two of my top priorities and they are. But I don't think we can accomplish either one without a strong focus on our people and their families. Getting it right for them in the future is what the Human Capital Strategy is all about, and I am interested in stepping out on it." (Human Capital Strategy Conference, 10 August 2005 at Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, Calif.)
"We need leaders for and from every part of our Navy. Our leadership should reflect the nation we represent." (Human Capital Strategy Conference, 10 August 2005 at Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, Calif.)
"My expectation when you put khakis on is you will lead… Lead, lead, lead every day." (All Hands Call for Sailors, 9 August 2005 at 32nd Street Naval Station, San Diego, Calif.)
"I have learned as much about leadership when I have failed… We're not zero defect." (All Hands Call for Sailors, 9 August 2005 at 32nd Street Naval Station, San Diego, Calif.)
"My expectation for leadership is exceptionally high. Just talking about it doesn't answer the mail. You see me walk it, I expect you to." (All Hands Call for Sailors, 9 August, 2005 at 32nd Street Naval Station, San Diego, Calif.)
"I have a very high expectation for myself and I have a very high expectation for you and our Navy to be able to accept the missions that will come." (All Hands Call for Sailors, 9 August, 2005 at 32nd Street Naval Station, San Diego, Calif.)
"Threats to our security are coming from places we aren't necessarily accustomed to. We just can't be a predictable force anymore. But I know unpredictability, like what we need in the Fleet Response Plan today, causes more uncertainty for our families. One of the best ways to reduce that uncertainty is by telling our people what we know just as soon as we know it." (Ombudsman Quality Management Board, 25 July 2005 at the United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Md.)
"I am convinced that family readiness is tied directly to combat readiness. Our families serve as we serve, and the ombudsman program is critical to making sure we recognize that." (Speaking at Ombudsman Quality Management Board, 25 July 2005 at the U.S. Naval Academy.)
"When you put on khakis, you are no longer a Machinist’s Mate or Fire Controlman or Culinary Specialist or, you pick the rate. You are a Chief, and you are responsible for one thing and that is leading." (Addressing the Senior Enlisted Academy, Class 119, 28 July 2005 in Newport, R.I.)
"Defending freedom today requires a real commitment to supporting the combatant commanders and our fellow services, agencies, allies, and partners. It requires teamwork." (From All Ahead Full — Message to the men and women of the United States Navy, 23 July 2005)
"I fundamentally believe leadership is the ability to create solutions where nobody thought any existed. Good leadership solves problems. Quite frankly, bad leadership does exactly the opposite." (All Hands Call for Sailors, 9 August, 2005 at 32nd Street Naval Station, San Diego, Calif.)
"I fundamentally believe that within each and every one of us lies the capacity to lead. No matter where we stand in the chain of command, we all have a responsibility to develop our leadership potential and that of the Sailors in our charge." (From All Ahead Full — Message to the men and women of the United States Navy, 23 July 2005)
"Today the Navy grants me yet another great opportunity, and I intend to make good on my obligation in return. Listen. Learn. And lead. Those will be my watchwords these next four years — a challenge to myself and to all of you." (From Assumption of Command remarks, 22 July 2005 at U.S. Naval Academy)
"We hope for the future and emulate the World War II generation. We look to their courage, to their determination, and to their commitment. Today, our brave young men and women are doing just that. You see it in Iraq, you see it in Afghanistan, and you see it in other places around the world. I have visited them in the field and in the Fleet, and in our hospitals. And I can tell you that this generation of fighting women and men are up to the challenge. Their eyes sparkle. Their resolve is steel. They know there is no substitute for the power that comes from a vision of freedom. " (At the 64th Annual Pearl Harbor Day Commemoration, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, 7 December 2005)
"I believe we derive enormous strength from our diversity, that we need leaders for and leaders from all parts of our Navy." (From Assumption of Command remarks, 22 July 2005 at U.S. Naval Academy.)
"The bottom line is our mutual security depends on relationships. Seek them. Grow them. Treasure them. But as with any relationship, know it will take time, it will take effort, and it will take honesty to foster confidence and trust, and in the end, that is what we all want, to know each other, to understand each other, and most importantly to trust each other." (Naval Postgraduate School Commencement, Naval Post Graduate School, Monterey, CA, September 21, 2007)
"I have spent many days, many visits to Bethesda to visit the wounded, and I have been struck both at Bethesda and at Walter Reed of the power of the family in healing our wounded. And for us as leaders and institutions, we must not just recognize that and pay tribute to it but support it because the doctors and the nurses do the medicine, but the power of families and family support to heal those young men and women they have raised has truly created miracle after miracle. " (Naval Postgraduate School Commencement, Naval Post Graduate School, Monterey, CA, September 21, 2007)
"Whether or not we decide to remain shackled to the past will determine the fate not only of the United States or of your own country, but of the whole of humanity. The world is changing rapidly, and that is not necessarily bad. But change can be tough, and we need to deal with it. " (Naval Postgraduate School Commencement, Naval Post Graduate School, Monterey, CA, September 21, 2007)

Quotes by
Category

1,000 Ship Navy
War on Terror
Shipbuilding/New Platforms
Diversity
Maritime Strategy
Heritage
Recruitment/Retention
Navy Budget/Strategic Plan
Miscellaneous