PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (NNS) -- Naval Security Group Activity Kunia and Naval Security Group Activity Pearl Harbor merged commands in a ceremony Sept. 30 at the USS Nevada Memorial to establish a single Naval Security Group Activity, Hawaii.
"We are creating this morning the largest operational command in the naval security group," said Rear. Adm. Joseph D. Burns, commander, Naval Security Group Command. "We're preparing our infrastructure to make it more responsive. We're reallocating our limited resources to maximize their effect, and we're leveraging the various strengths of our partners and sister services by consolidating Navy assets in a joint facility."
In effect, NSGA Kunia and NSGA Pearl Harbor were disestablished as commands during the ceremony, but as Burns pointed out, the ceremony was more of a transformation to enhance mission effectiveness.
"Unlike other disestablishment ceremonies, we're not really disestablishing today," he said. "Pearl Harbor's people and mission will continue through the merger with NSGA Kunia. It makes sense that we can build complete teams and maintain a critical mass in a single entity...allowing NSGA Hawaii to become a one-stop shop for our customers."
Cmdr. Darren L. Turner, former commanding officer of NSGA Pearl Harbor, noted that the unique environment in which the ceremony was held played an important role in understanding the need for the transformation.
"I cannot think of a more fitting place to hold this particular ceremony," he said. "I can't help but think the events that transpired here on Dec. 7, 1941, induced a transition period within our military - a period where our country had to unite resources in order to accomplish the mission at hand. We are again in a period of transition. From my perspective, the naval security group has stepped forward with grace and authority, boldly transforming how [we] do business, in order to not only be more effective but also much more efficient."
Sailors from both commands emphasized the change as positive, and looked forward to meeting new co-workers.
"The Navy is always changing," said Crypotologic Technician (Maintenance) 3rd Class Nicolas Dunlap, from NSGA Kunia. "The best thing about the merge is getting to know new people, because building relationships and camaraderie is very important."
NSGA Kunia was officially commissioned Nov. 14, 1980, at Wheeler Air Force Base to serve as an integral member of the worldwide U.S. communications network, and provide radio relay and secure communications for the defense of the United States and its allies. NSGA Pearl Harbor was officially commissioned July 9, 1982, and served as an interpretive detachment assigned to the then-Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet.
Capt. Christopher L. Parente, former commanding officer of NSGA Kunia, became the first commanding officer of NSGA Hawaii at the ceremony. He noted that he hopes the union of the commands brings positive changes from the Sailors working together.
"I am thrilled to be the first commanding officer of Naval Security Group Activity Hawaii," he said. "This is more than a merger between two activities. It is the merger of two families."
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