Ask the Chief Forum Opens Lines of Communication

Story Number: NNS100401-02Release Date: 4/1/2010 7:47:00 AM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Elizabeth St. John, Navy Public Affairs Support Element East

NORFOLK (NNS) -- Sailors in the Hampton Roads area were given an opportunity to have their most pressing career questions answered by a panel of senior enlisted personnel from various warfare communities during the "Ask the Chief" Forum at Naval Station Norfolk March 30.

The frank and open discussion was just one of the many events which took place around Hampton Roads as part of the Chief Petty Officer (CPO) 117th Birthday Celebration.

"I think it's important that our Sailors see that their leaders care about their input," said Commander Naval Surface Forces Atlantic Force Master Chief (SW/AW) James Williams. "I never miss the opportunity to talk to Sailors one-on-one."

After each member of the panel introduced themselves and spoke briefly about their community, the floor was opened for questions from the E-6 and below audience. Sailors were encouraged not to hold back or be timid about voicing their concerns.

"The key to success in the Navy is information exchange," said Naval Station Norfolk Command Master Chief (SW/AW) Gregg L. Snaza.

The two-hour forum gave Sailors an opportunity to ask questions on a great range of topics including IA assignments, sea-shore rotations, PFA failures and the unique challenges facing dual military families.

Sailors were encouraged to take charge of their careers and take advantage of the many opportunities that are available to them.

While acknowledging the various pressures facing today's Navy, Williams commended Sailors for continuing to do an outstanding job.

"We are consistently doing more things with less people," said Williams. "We are still getting the mission done, in the surface force or in any other force."

Hampton Roads area CPOs also participated in community relations events and served Sailors lunch at the galley as part of the birthday festivities.

For more news from Naval Station Norfolk, visit

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