Senior Enlisted Academy Brings Waterfront Initiative to USS Theodore Roosevelt

Story Number: NNS110504-13Release Date: 5/4/2011 3:57:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Tyrell Morris, USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) Public Affairs

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (NNS) -- Instructors from the Navy Senior Enlisted Academy (SEA) visited USS Theodore Roosevelt CVN 71 and conducted the Chief Petty Officer Mess Development (Waterfront Initiative) seminar in an effort to bring lessons normally taught at the academy to waterfront chief's messes, April 27.

TR is the first aircraft carrier chief's mess to receive this Waterfront Initiative, which is a one-day seminar designed to energize CPO messes to become more effective leaders. The seminar, sponsored by the SEA in Newport, R.I., focuses on CPO responsibilities, key Navy programs, team-building and leadership development.

"The chief's mess is the backbone of any Navy ship," said Master Chief Hospital Corpsman (SS/AW) Dave Dipietro, one of the instructors for the seminar. "Training and developing the chief's mess enables the rest of the ship to grow and develop. The lessons we bring can benefit a Chief's mess on the waterfront right now, and it's important we get this training out to them now."

The seminar, conducted at Huntington Hall Navy Berthing Facility in Newport News, Va., provided TR chiefs the opportunity to discuss various topics of interest for the CPO mess such as establishing and maintaining good order and discipline, effective communication, and mentoring.

The instructors led TR mess representatives through a dialogue on current command practices and policies and what actions they can take to improve upon them. The training was hands-on allowing the chiefs to move around and interact with each other. They conducted case studies to reinforce teamwork and develop skills to identify, assess and solve relevant issues.

"With our mess being a large mess, this opportunity allowed some of our chiefs to refocus on deckplate leadership," said TR Command Master Chief (SW/AW) Jack Callison. "The Waterfront initiative is all about brilliant on the basics and sailorization, and it's about training for the trainer. The training just bolsters our Chief's Mess to continue to maintain good order and discipline within the command."

Following the delivery of the Waterfront CPO Development Seminar, commanding officers have the opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of the training by reviewing the teamwork and communication within the CPO mess and the interaction between the CPO mess and the rest of the ship's crew.

"This was a great day of training and camaraderie," said Callison. "The interaction and exchange of knowledge between the Chiefs will ensure our TR Sailors are properly trained and will become effective leaders themselves."

Theodore Roosevelt is currently undergoing its scheduled mid-life Refueling Complex Overhaul (RCOH) at Newport News shipbuilding, a division of Huntington Ingalls Industries. During the 39-month maintenance period, TR's fuel will be replenished and significant upgrades will be made to the ship's combat and communication systems to extend the ship's service life for 25 or more years. All Nimitz-class aircraft carriers go through RCOH near the mid-point of their 50-year life cycle.

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