“I am proud to be a Supply Corps officer and even more proud that our community was able to lead the charge,” said Lt. Adam C. Johnson, founding member and chair of NJOC’s executive committee, during remarks at the ceremony. “The purpose of NJOC is not for lieutenants to solve the Navy’s problems. It is to create an avenue for junior personnel to make positive contributions to problem resolution, simultaneously providing us opportunities to grow through collaboration with leadership.”
The professional group, whose motto is “Bridging the Gap,” was the brainchild of Johnson in early 2019. He presented his concept to Rear Adm. Peter Stamatopoulos who in turn offered his support for the effort and agreed to serve as flag advocate for the budding organization. At that time, Stamatopoulos was serving as director of supply ordnance and logistics operations in the office of the chief of naval operations.
“When I first came in 30 years ago, we junior officers kind of stuck to ourselves, but the environment has changed. There is a lot more information out there and our young junior officers are hungry to participate,” said Stamatopoulos, who now serves as commander of Naval Supply Systems Command and 49th chief of Supply Corps, during his remarks. “It’s really important for us as senior leaders to make sure we give them these opportunities to contribute in their leader development and to encourage them to become as much as they can be and make the Navy better.”
The Navy’s classification of junior officers includes those holding the ranks of: ensign, lieutenant junior grade, lieutenant and lieutenant commander.
Following Johnson’s 2019 meeting with Stamatopoulos, he recruited fellow Supply Corps officers Lt. John Maslin, Lt. John O’Boyle and Lt. Gene Krampen to assist with NJOC’s development. Johnson explained the team then quickly recognized a critical need for civilian insight and added Jasmine Carpenter to help lay the groundwork for the organization. Carpenter is assigned as shared service provider oversight lead in the office of the assistant secretary of the Navy for financial management and also now serves as vice-chair of NJOC’s executive committee.
After an initial proof of concept, NJOC began to bring in junior officers from other Navy and Marine Corps communities to continue the group’s development and complete additional proof of concept operations.
The official mission of NJOC as laid out in their vision statement is “to provide advice and consultation to Navy leadership and other Department of Defense entities on interests and concerns specific to junior naval personnel.”
With initial development now complete, the Feb. 5 ceremony marked the official start of the process for NJOC to establish its formal relationship with the Navy. As the process moves forward, Johnson explained positions on NJOC matters will be created and staffed reporting directly to the chief of naval personnel and chief of naval research.
Additional plans he detailed for NJOC’s future include bringing the full range of officer communities into the fold, opening participation to Marine Corps officers with corresponding ranks and ensuring junior officers across all integrated warfare areas are represented and able to contribute to the organization.
Junior officers interested in participating in NJOC can expect to see information in the future on how to participate once the relationship with the Navy is reviewed and finalized.
Other senior Navy leadership attendees participating in the ceremony included: James F. “Hondo” Geurts, Navy undersecretary; Rear Adm. Lorin Selby, chief of naval research; and Dr. Mark A. Livingston, assistant deputy chief of naval operations for manpower, personnel, training and education.
Ted Nichols II, firstname.lastname@example.org
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