MCPON Holds All Hands Calls

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Story Number: NNS140320-03Release Date: 3/20/2014 8:39:00 AM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Martin L. Carey, Office of the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Mike Stevens and the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert spoke with Sailors and answered their questions during an all-hands call at Naval Base Kings Bay, Ga. and Naval Station Mayport, Fla. March 18.

The live event, transmitted worldwide via Navy Live Stream, addressed the questions and concerns of local Sailors and gave the opportunity for anyone with a computer to watch it online.

The call began with CNO discussing his tenants of warfighting first, operate forward, and be ready.

Stevens and Greenert answered questions about commissaries, uniform changes, manning, deployment predictability, and enlisted females on submarines among other topics.

"It's always nice to leave the beltway in Washington D.C. and have the opportunity to come out here and visit the fleet and hear what is on the minds of our war fighters," said Stevens.

A Sailor expressed her concern with lengthy deployments. MCPON assured her that leadership supports all efforts to minimize the toll that a long deployment may have on military families.

"We are fully committed to resourcing and funding programs that mitigate the stress on Sailors and their families."

MCPON also talked about the importance of being a teammate when a Sailor asked about receiving recognition on their evaluation for scoring an excellent on their Physical Fitness Assessment (PFA).

"Physical fitness is not only about you scoring an excellent, it's more about the things you are doing to support your shipmates in their physical readiness," he said. "It's great that you can ace your assessment but it's as equally important to ask yourself how you are helping your shipmate."

A senior chief petty officer asked what the Navy is going to do for Sailors coming from their "A" school. In his opinion, they aren't as technically savvy as their predecessors. MCPON reminded him that "A" school is where Sailors are taught the basics of their technical rating.

"In my travels throughout the fleet, I've witnessed the wonderful training that our instructors are doing, it is up to the leaders on the deckplates to build on that basic knowledge," he said. "It is our charge to train them on advanced techniques."

Toward the end of the call, a Sailor stood and asked about the rumblings she's read in military newspapers.

"I read that there is going to be a change in advancement for junior Sailors," she said.

MCPON answered, "Unless the Chief of Naval Personnel (CNP) signs a naval message about a change in our advancement system, it's only speculation and talk."

After answering this, MCPON acknowledged that there may be uncertainty among the ranks.

"We recognize there may be anxiety with regard to proposals, but remember that our greatest weapons system is unit morale," he said. "We're working hard to oprate under the highest levels of morale; leadership is fighting the good fight."

Stevens ended the call with giving a congratulatory 'shout out' to the First Class Petty Officers that were Chief Petty Officer board eligible.

Following the all-hands call, Stevens and Greenert sat down for a "Conversation with a Shipmate", an Internet video series, talking about the U.S. Navy's undersea dominance.

When asked about enlisted female Sailors on submarines, Stevens answered, "Senior leaders in our Navy have a responsibility to set the conditions and provide opportunities for officer and enlisted female Sailors to serve onboard submarines, and that is precisely what we are doing."

For more information on the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy visit www.navy.mil/local/mcpon.

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