CORONADO, Calif. (NNS) -- Oct. 1 marked the commissioning of Naval Special Warfare Operational Support Group (OSG) headquarters at Naval Special Warfare Command (NSWC) in Coronado, Calif.
Two new Naval Special Warfare (NSW) operational support teams will be commissioned later in October: Operational Support Team 1 in California and Operational Support Team 2 in Virginia. This completes the most ambitious and revolutionary realignment of the NSW Reserve community in the last 16 years. The realignment will more accurately match NSW active-duty operational requirements with NSW Reservist skills and expertise, to provide a seamless integration of active and Reserve personnel.
"We felt there was a better way of doing business - more adaptable, flexible and innovative, having the active and Reserve sides coming together," said Capt. William S. Wildrick, commander, OSG, and assistant chief of staff for Reserve programs, NSWC.
Today's volatile global environment and NSW's active participation in Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom and the global war on terrorism (GWOT), have dictated the need for the Reserve force. This reorganization and realignment was born with the intention of providing a more capable, malleable and focused force.
"We are at war. GWOT is calling on special warfare to do much more. Nothing was taken off our plate, but more is now expected of us. It certainly has put the spotlight on Reservists, because they represent 20 percent of NSW's manpower today," said Lt. Cmdr. Ken Wright, OSG. "This is a marathon, not a sprint."
The NSW Reserve realignment project promises the same positive impact in the way active and Reserve forces work together, train and deploy to sustain a wide range of new and ongoing missions around the globe. This realignment ends a period in NSW history and opens a whole new and exciting chapter where active and Reserve personnel - integrated - play major roles in fighting terrorism.
May 16, Rear Adm. Albert Calland, commander, Naval Special Warfare Command, approved the proposed realignment, moving the project forward towards its execution stage and final implementation in 2004.
The realignment project has three simple directives with clear and defined functions: build the infrastructure, realign the force, and execute transition
"It's a complete revamping of the way we train and administer our Navy Reserves, perhaps a model for the rest of the Navy," Wildrick said. "We will provide the right Reservist, at the right time, at the right place with the right capability to perform."
The goal is to provide theater commanders the most professional, highly-trained, flexible individuals and units, to perform any task, anywhere and at any time.
"It has created a central focus point for the entire NSW Reserve community. Before, I had to call up to 10 different Reserve centers to locate the right Reservist with the needed background, and then start mobilization procedures for each individual to be activated at each original center. Now we can control the entire force from one central place where everyone is concentrated. And they understand and speak our language - Spec War [Special Warfare] language," Wright said.
NSW Reservists will be assigned new units, and perhaps different jobs, following pre-selected criteria based on current active-duty needs, prior rate experience, related civilian experience, self-identified areas of interest and commanding officer's recommendation.
In a period of 24 months, all new units will complete a detailed training/school matrix plan tailored for every unit, which includes specific schedules. These plans encompass knowledge and professional factors needed, lists required reading materials, and identifies qualification requirements and schools or correspondence courses to be completed according to rating.
"It's turning generalists into specialists, giving us better integration with the active-duty component," said Wildrick.
For more information on Naval Special Warfare, visit the Web site: www.seal.navy.mil.
For related news, visit the Commander Naval Reserve Force Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/nrf.