USS JOHN C. STENNIS, At Sea (NNS) -- The John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group (CSG) held a change of command ceremony aboard the ship May 24.
Rear Adm. Craig Faller relieved Rear Adm. Joseph Aucoin as commander, CSG 3.
As commander, CSG 3, Aucoin led USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) to complete its planned incremental availability maintenance phase of deployment preparation and to be guided out of the shipyards directly into the workup process. Together, with the CSG, Aucoin oversaw completion of tailored ship's training availability, the final evaluation problem and the Navy's Board of Inspection and Survey from January to February 2011.
Vice Adm. Gerald Beaman, commander U.S. 3rd Fleet, presented the Legion of Merit to Aucoin in recognition of his efforts and the progress made during his time as the commander of CSG 3.
"I really do wish I was going on this deployment," said Aucoin. "I envy the heck out of you. I think I'll be living vicariously through you guys. You're really going to have a terrific deployment, and I can't wait to hear all the good news coming from you all."
Faller is reporting to CSG 3 after successfully completing a tour as commander, Navy Recruiting Command. Faller, a Pennsylvania native and U.S. Naval Academy graduate, earned his Bachelor of Science in Systems Engineering in 1983. He then earned his master's in National Security Affairs (Strategic Planning) from the Naval Postgraduate School in 1990.
In a brief speech, Faller detailed expectations for the CSG as well as expectations for himself.
"We are warfighters," said Faller. "This takes teamwork, hard work, training and trust. And who do I trust? I trust you. And now it's my turn to earn your trust. We all might ask ourselves, 'Who trusts us?' America trusts us! To deliver. To be ready, on time, first time and every time - and we will," said Faller.
Faller is now leading the John C. Stennis CSG during its composite training unit exercise, a set of tests to prepare the CSG for long-term engagements overseas during an upcoming deployment.
For more news from USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn74/.