NEWPORT NEWS, Va (NNS) -- Members of the U.S. Naval Academy (USNA) Class of 1971 honored a junior officer assigned to USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) for his ethics and leadership aboard the aircraft carrier on June 6.
Lt. Wayne Shipman, who serves as Aircraft Intermediate Maintenance Department (AIMD) Avionics Division Officer (IM3), received the Ethical Character in Leadership award from members of the USNA Class of '71. The organization established the award to promote the development of ethical leadership qualities and formally recognize exceptional junior officer performance.
Shipman found out that he was getting the award hours before it was announced.
"It was exciting. I've never received an award like that," said Shipman, who has been in the Navy for 22 years. "I was kind of caught off guard. My department head called a meeting with all the division officers so they could get me down to the wardroom. So, I thought I was going to a meeting."
Shipman, a native of Dexter, NM, has been assigned to TR since September 2012. In his nine-months aboard, Shipman was hand selected to institute the command's division in the spotlight (DITS) program, overseeing a 26-person team focused on 23 distinct training and readiness areas. The program rejuvenated the operational mindset of a crew of nearly 2,600 sailors. As repair locker officer, Shipman led 82 Chiefs and Sailors in completing all facets of crew certification training, increasing readiness and qualifying all personnel ahead of schedule.
Off duty, Shipman serves as chairman of the deacons for Virginia Beach Beacon Baptist Church, spiritually leading nine men in the provision of moral character. In addition, Shipman, a father of two young children, volunteers as soccer coach to two 10 year old and under teams. Shipman, a graduate of Dexter High School, has two college degrees: a Bachelor of Science degree in Professional Aeronautics from Embry Riddle and an MBA from Troy University.
The USNA Class of '71 established a unique relationship with TR, which grew from the commonality between the graduation year - 1971 - and the ship's hull number - CVN 71. Members of the private organization are largely retired officers of the US Navy and Marine Corp who were admitted to the Naval Academy. The award is presented annually to the junior officer who most exemplifies exceptional ethical leadership, pride, professionalism, and dedication to duty.
"It's a program to recognize those officers who demonstrate outstanding leadership and character above what is normally required of them," said retired Navy Capt. Michael Longworth, a member of the USNA Class of '71. "It helps show that good leadership is recognized and rewarded even if the choices that lead to someone of outstanding character are tough ones to make personally and professionally."
Longworth and retired Navy Capt. John Tennant presented the award to Shipman
As part of the honor, Shipman received a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, a cash award, and a commemorative plaque.
For more news from USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn71/.