WASHINGTONN (NNS) -- Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC) held a change of command ceremony at the Washington Navy Yard Feb. 3.
Vice Adm. William D. French relieved Vice Adm. Michael C. Vitale.
Vitale has served as the chief officer leading the Navy's entire shore infrastructure for nearly three years and was the third commander in the history of CNIC. This infrastructure, also known as the CNIC enterprise; includes 11 Navy regions, 70 installations, and 127 Naval Operations Support Centers, and is responsible for 31 business lines and 122 critical shore capabilities across three major categories; operations, quality of life, and facilities management.
Throughout his tenure Vitale led efforts to standardize, align, synchronize and innovate new methods and processes that furthered CNIC's mission to deliver effective and efficient readiness from the shore that sustains the fleet, enables the fighter, and supports families.
Vitale praised the numerous accomplishments of the personnel under his command and of the entire CNIC Enterprise; from molding the Navy Family Accountability and Assessment System (NFAAS) into the model Personnel Accountability System used across the services, to the development of new shore integration methods and a Total Workforce, capable of continuously supporting operations and services.
"The personnel here at the headquarters, and throughout the entire enterprise have faced growing numbers of issues and challenges," said Vitale, "I've had the pleasure of witnessing this Enterprise solve complex and dynamic problems, some self-imposed, some caused by outside forces, and forge a way ahead toward a model of shore integration that has forever changed how we do business and provide service the Fleet, fighter and family."
Vitale also thanked the many Navy communities throughout the world that support and allow the Navy to operate in close proximity to their homes and livelihoods, acknowledging the importance of maintaining close ties from the smallest Installation to the Headquarters level.
"It's the communities, both in the U.S. and abroad, that invite us to live and operate in their backyard, and it's the communities, both within the Navy and outside, that are the anchor of our ability to maintain and operate the best Naval force in the world, and I want to thank each one for their support, patience, and welcoming spirit," said Vitale.
French thanked Vitale for his wisdom and guidance and spoke briefly about his optimism and vision for the future of CNIC.
"During the last six years I have been with the CNIC enterprise I have learned that we have some of the best, brightest, and most talented professionals in the Navy," said French. "Under Vice Admiral Vitale's leadership the CNIC team has set the example for how an enterprise should function and have established immense credibility on how you are meeting customer needs. I'm honored to be taking command at this point in the history of the command."
French was promoted shortly before the event after having a successful tour at Navy Region Southwest in San Diego, Calif., where he accomplished major milestones toward energy and water conservation and numerous other green initiatives. French, the son of an Air Force officer and native of San Antonio, is a graduate of Vanderbilt University where he received commission through the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps program in May, 1979. He earned a Master of Science degree from Naval Postgraduate School in 1985 and a Master of Arts from the Naval War College in 1999.
A career submarine officer, French has served on a number of submarines and commanded USS Salt Lake City (SSN 716) and Submarine Squadron 3 in Pearl Harbor. His prior flag officer commands include tours at Navy Region Northwest, Navy Region Marianas in Guam, and Navy Region Southwest.
"I am proud to be part of such a superb organization, and look I forward to working with you over the next few years," French said.
CNIC oversees a $10 billion budget, more than 83,000 facilities and 58,000 personnel, all managed from a single unified enterprise.
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