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Inside This Issue Page 3 RDAC Page 4 Spartans Page 6 Training


Stay Hungry

Cmdr. Derek Wessman NRD Phoenix, Commanding Officer

Page 8 Around the Fleet

Road Runner Staff Cmdr. Derek Wessman Commanding Officer Cmdr. Michael Mosbruger Executive Officer CMDCM(SCW/SW) Eric Cole

Command Master Chief

MC1(AW) Adrian Melendez Public Affairs Officer Editor/Layout and Design The Road Runner is a monthlynewsletter produced by the U.S. Navy Recruiting District Phoenix Public Affairs. It is intended primarily, but not exclusivly, for the use, information and entertainment of it’s active duty and reserve members, civilian employees and their families. Any views exspressed herin are not necessarily the official postions of the U.S. Navy. The Road Runner staff encourages feedbacl from it’s readers. Please submit all articles, suggestions, ideas, comments, photos, compliments or complaints to MC1(AW) Adrian Melendez at adrian.b. melendez@

This is my final Road Runner article. I write it with both sadness and joy - sadness because it signifies the end of a tremendously enriching tour and joy because NRD Phoenix is on a path to greatness. Just look at the following pages of awards! We began Fiscal Year 2013 with one goal – “To Be #1!” After the first quarter, that’s exactly where we stand. Why? It’s simple…Because of your hard work and dedication to each other and our mission. I’m continually impressed with the professionalism of every member of our NRD Phoenix Family. Each of you truly takes ownership of your roles and promotes a culture of discipline based on our guiding principles of pro-activeness, teamwork, transparency and trust. That is the key to our current success. “In life we are often faced with two choices. One of them is easy, but the only reward is that it was easy.” (Unknown) Being part of a championship team is never easy… Your hard work is making a differ-


ence. I’d like to take this opportunity to welcome aboard our new XO, CDR Michael Mosbruger, who comes to us after five years at the Pentagon on both the CNO Staff and the Secretary of Defense Staff. He hit the ground running and is already making significant contributions to our team. Welcome aboard! On March 8, I will turn over command of NRD Phoenix to CDR Alex Ortiz, an outstanding Naval Officer who needs no introduction, but to whom I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude. He has been my sounding board every step of the way. I couldn’t have asked for a better Executive Officer and he will be an even better Commanding Officer. It is with confidence that I will give the “con” to such a competent, trustworthy and determined leader. It has truly been an honor and humbling experience to serve alongside each and every one of you as your Commanding Officer. NRD Phoenix is currently head and shoulders above the competition and on the verge of “explosive growth,” across the full spectrum of our mission. However, this will only happen if we stay true to the principles that got us here. It’s good to be #1, of course, but only if we’ve earned it and our integrity is intact. Don’t let complacency or shrinking budgets get in the way. Finally, continue to look out for your Shipmates by adhering to our Navy Core Values of Honor, Courage and Commitment - Be Honest, Be Yourself and Be There… and the result will Be #1! Stay Hungry! Skipper

NRD Phoenix Hosts RDAC Luncheon By Daymond Howell

The Recruiting District Assistance Council (RDAC) recently held their semi-annual luncheon at the East Valley Institute of Technology (EVIT) on December 6, 2012. The council is comprised of local business leaders, educators, Navy League members, and military guest who gathered to both network, and forge ideas that further lend support to our field recruiting staff. Offering the opening remarks, Commander Derek Wessman, Commanding Officer of Navy Recruiting District Phoenix and Mr. Dave Collins, the RDAC Chairman presented the council a summary of the ongoing operations of our Navy’s global footprint. Wessman went on to further provide the council with a snapshot and overall update of NRD Phoenix’s command objectives, mission success, and challenges in both the current and the past fiscal year. Commander Wessman further expressed his sincere appreciation to each RDAC member and the direct positive impact the council has

had with his field recruiters and headquarters staff alike. Chiefly, Commander Wessman noted the specific accomplishments of the council’s measurable impact in critical mission areas such as officer interviews, high school and technical campus access, Science Technology and Math (STEM) initiatives. Commander Wessman concluded his remarks by presenting Paul “Doc” Johnson with a plaque of appreciation for hosting the luncheon and his unwavering support of the Navy recruiting mission. Johnson, a retired Chief Hospital Corpsman, currently serves as the Campus Director at EVIT and accepted the award on behalf of his staff and students. “Doc”, in describing his campus, also noted that the impressive luncheon was coordinated, prepared, and served entirely by his culinary arts department students. Johnson also introduced to the council his key staff members and department chairs at EVIT, and also noted several Navy recruiting initiatives

currently ongoing and in the future throughout the campus respectively. After the luncheon, the council had the opportunity to break-out into their respective committees to further network, forge ideas, and foster relationships. In closing, RDAC Chairman Dave Collins described the RDACs strategic plan to each committee respectively and closed with “In the end, the relationship between our local community and the Navy is a vital and important part of what makes our RDAC work.”

On The Cover

Equipment Operator 1st Class Alana Siegwald stands proudly as part of the Navy Recruiting District (NRD) Phoenix Color Guard, during the retirement ceremony of Cryptologic Technician (Collection) 1st Class Charles Dodd at Wesley Bolin Memorial Park in Phoenix, Ariz., Jan. 18. The Color Guard is looking for volunteers, from local Phoenix Navy recruiting stations, to be part of the command’s color guard team and represent America’s Navy at ceremonies and sporting events throughout the valley. Interested Sailors should contact EO1 Siegwald at for more information. (U.S. Navy photo by MC1 Adrian Melendez)


Albuquerque Recruiters Compete in Annual Race By MC1 Adrian Melendez

Three Sailors from Navy Recruiting Station Albuquerque participate in the annual Spartan Race in Phoenix, Ariz., Feb. 10. Navy Career Counselor 1st Class Willie Herron, Electrician’s Mate 1st Class Cecil Deveau, and Yeoman 2nd Class Adrianna Gonzalez made the six hour drive from Albuquerque to participate in the 4.7 race and obstacle course, which consist of testing participants strength and stamina by having them climb ropes, crawl through mud and carry sand bags. Herron said he has done other mud-based races before, but the Spartan Race was his first obstacle course and the difficulty lived up to his expectations.

“The race was everything I expected it to be and I look forward to doing it again next year,” said Herron. Because of the different obstacles all three Sailors had their strengths and weaknesses throughout the race, and if any participant failed to accomplish an obstacle they were required to do a set of squat thrust, or “Burpees”, to make up for the failure. Gonzalez said the most difficult part for her was trying to climb up a 30foot rope 2 miles in to the course. “I expected to be able to climb the rope, so I was a little disappointed to have to do the burpees instead,” She said. “I’m going to train more on my upper body and come back stronger next time and climb the rope.” Through all the difficulty of the course, all three Sailors finished


the race tired and in great spirits. “The obstacles were a blast,” said Gonzalez. “I liked running up all the hills because it was really challenging.” “I think we did pretty well,” said Herron. “I can’t wait for next year.”


NRD Phoenix Conducts Annual All-Hands Training, Awards Ceremony Story and Photo by MC1 Adrian Melendez All through the month of January the Navy Recruiting District Phoenix chain off command travelled throughout the divisions giving annual training, as well as recognizing the hard work Sailors have been doing throughout the district during the last fiscal year. Some of the training given included responsible use of alcohol, suicide awareness, and Sexual Assault Prevention Response-Fleet (SAPR-F). The SAPR-F is a fleet wide mandated training aimed at teaching Sailors how to recognize the signs and prevent sexual assault before it happens. “It is imperative that we disrupt the continuum of harm resulting from sexual assault,” said Chief of Naval Personnel, Vice Adm. Scott Van Buskirk, in a NAVADMIN released November 2012. “Every Sailor has a responsibility to make a difference and prevent this crime.” Chief Navy Career Counselor Tonia Branco, SAPR advocate for Albuquerque and El Paso, assisted in facilitating the training, and echoed Van Buskirk’s call to

Lt. Peter Rancourt, and Chief Navy Career Counselor Tonia Branco, train Sailors from Navy Recruiting District Phoenix’s Division 5 on the Navy’s Sexual Assault prevention Response-Fleet (SAPR-F) in Tucson, Ariz., Jan. 10. SAPR-F is fleet-wide mandated training, aimed at educating Sailors how to prevent, and report, sexual assault in America’s Navy.

stop sexual assault in America’s Navy. “I hope from this day forward you have the honor, courage and commitment to stop what should be stopped and be that difference,” said Branco to a group of Sailors from Division 2 in El Paso, Texas. NRD Phoenix Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Derek Wessman, attended each of training sessions


across the district not only to reiterate the importance of the training, but also to recognize the Sailors for all their hard work during the year and the amount of pride he has for all the accomplishments the district accomplished as a team, including the Recruiting “R”, Enlisted “E” and Officer “O”.


Women at the Helm: Celebrating 2013 Women’s History Month By Chief Operations Specialist Jessica Myers, Navy Office of Women’s Policy WASHINGTON - The Navy joins the nation in celebrating Women’s History Month during the month of March, as announced in Naval Administrative message 039/13, released Feb. 22. Commands are strongly encouraged to increase their knowledge and awareness of the contributions of women to our Navy and nation by celebrating the national Women’s History Month theme, “Women Inspiring Innovation through Imagination: Celebrating Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)” through programs, exhibits, publications, and participation in military and community events. One Navy STEM pioneer includes Grace Murray Hopper, who wanted to put her Ph.D. in Mathematics to use for her nation in the midst of World War II. In 1943, she joined the Naval Reserves and was commissioned as a lieutenant in 1944. During World War II she worked at the Bureau of Ordnance Computation Project at Harvard University and at the end of the war joined the Harvard faculty. Retiring as a rear admiral, Hopper, was recognized as a

pioneer computer programmer, the co-inventor of Common Business Oriented Language (COBOL), and for coining the term “bug” for computer malfunctions. Hopper was buried at Arlington National Cemetery in 1992. USS Hopper (DDG 70) was commissioned as her namesake in 1997; this was only the second Navy warship to be named after a woman. Also during World War II, the Navy launched the Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVES) program. Along with Hopper, more than 85,000 WAVES worked in STEM fields as air traffic controllers, cryptologists, draftsmen, meteorologists, and translators during World War II. In December 2012, history was made in the Navy’s nuclear


community when Lieutenant Junior Grade Marquette Leveque, assigned to the gold crew of USS Wyoming (SSBN 742), and Lieutenants Junior Grade Amber Cowan and Jennifer Noonan of USS Maine (SSBN 741) blue crew became the first female unrestricted line officers to qualify in submarines and receive their Submarine Warfare Insignia, also known as “dolphins.” Today in the Navy, female officers fill 10 percent of STEM positions, including engineering duty officers and information warfare professionals. Female enlisted Sailors make up 22 percent of the cryptology and intelligence community and 21 percent of operaWomen Continued On Page 9

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tional ratings, including aviation warfare systems operators and sonar technicians. Female Sailors continue to excel both ashore and afloat, serving in various STEM related fields. More than 54,000 active duty women and more than 10,000 female Reservists are serving in the Navy. They make up 17.3 percent of the force and make indispensable contributions to our mission and operations. Nearly 59,000 women serve in a wide range of specialties as Navy civilians. The current Navy Total Force includes 33 active and Reserve female flag officers, 67 female senior executive service members, 56 female command master chiefs, and 6 female command senior chiefs leading from the front. Currently, the top three highest-ranking female officers in the Navy are Vice Adm. Carol Pottenger, Vice Adm. Michelle Howard, and Vice Adm. Robin Braun. Pottenger, a surface warfare officer, was one of the first women selected for sea duty and went on to become the third commander, Navy Ex-

peditionary Combat Command. Howard also a surface warfare officer, was the first African American woman to command a ship in the U.S. Navy when she took command of USS Rushmore (LSD 47), and in 2012 she became the first African-American woman to receive a third star in flag rank within the Department of Defense when she was promoted Aug. 24. Braun, a career naval aviator and former commanding officer of VR-48, has more than 5,800 flight hours in Navy aircraft. The top three highestranking female enlisted leaders in the Navy are Fleet Master Chief Joann Ortloff, Fleet Master Chief April Beldo, and Force Master Chief Nancy Hollingsworth. Force Master Chief April Beldo, currently the Naval Education and Training Command Force Master Chief, will make history as the Navy’s first female African American Fleet Master Chief when she assumes her position as the Manpower, Personnel, Training and Education (MPT&E) fleet master chief later this month. The Navy’s 67-strong

Senior Executive Service also has a strong STEM presence amongst its seniormost women. Carla Lucchino, Department of Navy Assistant for Administration is the top female civilian SES. Steffanie Easter, executive director for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Program Office, holds a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering and master’s degree in engineering management. Easter is currently leading the F-35 Lightning II Joint Program, the Department of Defense’s initiative for defining affordable and sustainable fifth-generation strike aircraft.

Rights and Empowerment Highlighted in PRT Farah Visit to Radio Television Afghanistan By Lt. j.g. Matthew Stroup, Radio Television Afghanistan Public Affairs FARAH CITY, Afghaniturning over with the previous PRT stan - Increasing rights for women in October 2012. in society and their empowerment PRT Farah visited the RTA over the past decade was the focus Farah facility as a follow up to a of conversation during a meeting recent journalism skills training between representatives from Procourse in Farah led by staff from vincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) the local directorate of informaFarah and local leaders at the Radio tion and culture that built media Television Afghanistan broadcast capacity for both male and female facility in Farah City, Feb. 23. students. In total, 41 students, 20 This was PRT Farah’s first of them female, graduated from the visit to the television and radio course at a ceremony in Farah City broadcast facility in Farah since one week ago. One of the students


in the class, Nargas Karimi, is one of five full-time radio broadcast journalists for RTA Farah. Karimi, who is also a second year student at the Farah Teacher Training Institute, has attended many journalism workshops both in Farah and in neighboring Herat province. “I learned a lot about media and journalism during the training workshop in Farah,” said Karimi. PRT Farah Continued on Page 10

PRT Farah Continued From Page 9

“I actually learned more than I thought I would. It was really beneficial training.” Not long ago in Farah, in all of Afghanistan in fact, women wouldn’t have had the opportunity to go to school or work outside of the home. They certainly wouldn’t have had the opportunity to work as a radio personality on a local radio station. One person who remembers that time well is the Farah director of women’s affairs, Leiluma Sediqui. Sediqui recalled a time when she worked as a teacher in Kabul during the Taliban regime. Her daughter was sick and needed to visit the doctor. At that time, Sediqui’s husband was in Pakistan working as a merchant, having lost his position as a local prosecutor under the Taliban. “I took my daughter to see the doctor, who was a cousin of my husband’s,” said Sediqui. “When he started the examination on my daughter, a Talib was sitting behind me and noticed that I uncovered my face. He wanted to lash me but the doctor stopped him. I quickly covered my face. These were my darkest times in Afghanistan.” Much has changed since that time in Afghanistan, and while women’s rights and issues are certainly not an afterthought, ideas are changing within the culture. “I have been the director of women’s affairs for ten years,” said Sediqui. “For the first two years, I didn’t leave my office. When the Taliban went away, women were able to be a part of meetings and participate in society and the government.” Sediqui believes that there are two main reasons for the

culture shift regarding women’s rights in Farah. The removal of the Taliban is the first reason, followed by an increased awareness and understanding of women’s rights. Sediqui noted that public information campaigns and monthly women’s rights seminars in all of Afghanistan’s provinces have led to a shift in the mindset of the people. She also pointed out the fact that each of Afghanistan’s provinces now has a directorate of women’s affairs to continue progress in these areas. Despite the increase in women’s rights in Farah, there are still challenges. Karimi, who was helped by a male family member to get her job at RTA Farah, also said that not all of her family and friends are entirely supportive. She even noted that someone close to her asked if there wasn’t another woman in Farah that could work on the radio. Her response, “This is what I want to do.” Karimi, now 25-years-old, spent her formative years in Iran as a refugee during the Taliban years. Despite the challenges her family faced, she grew up with a dream to be on television. In fact, Karimi said that she used to frequently look into a mirror and pretend like she was a journalist. Her dreams are slowly becoming her reality. Along with the growth of women’s rights, positions in the media are becoming more readily available for women in Farah, despite a lack of open positions on the general manager’s tashkil - a document outlining the amount of staff he can hire. Currently, another young, Farahi woman works on a part-time, volunteer basis at RTA Farah, producing a television show about children.


“It used to be that I would never get job requests from women,” said Mohammed Hashem Omari, general manager of RTA Farah. “Now I get requests from women to work here on a regular basis. Unfortunately my tashkil is full so I have no full-time positions for men or for women. But, I do make an effort to give jobs to women when positions become available.” During the PRT’s visit to the radio and television broadcast center, PRT members had an opportunity to watch through the glass as Karimi interviewed Sediqui for a live radio interview, an event that certainly wouldn’t have occurred ten years ago. Engagements like this are a signal that change is taking place in key ways in Afghanistan. While many people are concerned that the post-transition security situation in Afghanistan will lead to the loss of ground gained on women’s rights issues, Sediqui isn’t one of them. “There are some people who are afraid of what will happen [after transition],” said Sediqui. “and maybe security will get worse. But whatever happens with the security situation, the mindset of women and people who have been exposed to women’s rights will not change. Nobody can change our minds.” PRT Farah’s mission is to train, advise, and assist Afghan government leaders at the municipal, district, and provincial levels in Farah province, Afghanistan. Their civil-military team is comprised of members of the U.S. Navy, U.S. Army, the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

EOD School Graduates First Students from Albania, St. Vincent and the Peruvian Navy

By Ensign Elizabeth Allen, Naval School of Explosive Ordnance Disposal Public Affairs EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. I made it.” (NNS) -- The first students from Currently, 94 countries Albania, the Peruvian navy and the send their students to NAVSCOisland chain of St. Vincent and the LEOD to receive training and basic Grenadines graduated from the Na- knowledge of EOD. The internaval School of Explosive Ordnance tional students are held to the same Disposal (NAVSCOLEOD) receiv- curriculum standards as their U.S. ing their Basic EOD Technician counterparts. qualification pins Feb. 13. “Everything that needs Seventeen students comto be learned has to be learned at pleted the International Explosive the school,” explained Pica, when Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Phase II speaking of the curriculum taught Surface Course, which began Aug. at NAVSCOLEOD. “We aren’t al2. lowed to take books home.” Eleven of the graduates Petty Officer 3rd Class will continue into the Underwater Damian Franklyn, a member of the Ordnance Division of school for a St. Vincent Coast Guard, is one of three-week course in identification, the 11 students continuing onto the (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Derek R. Sanchez) render-safe procedures and disposal Underwater Ordnance course of team.” procedures for underwater ordstudy. The school’s International nance. “I feel honored that I’ve Military Student Officer, Billy “This course was very chal- made it so far,” said Franklyn. “I Martin, is in charge of up to 125 inlenging,” said Albanian Army Capt. will take the knowledge I learned ternational students each year who Vladimin Pica, a recent graduate here to help teach others and make attend NAVSCOLEOD and is their of the international course. “It was my country’s security systems liaison for all issues in and outside a long course, but with the help of stronger. I’m optimistic my country of the classroom. the instructors and my friends in will start sending more students to “Having students graduate the class and coming to study hall, this school to form our own EOD from NAVSCOLEOD and return home as their countries’ first EOD technicians represents a significant accomplishment,” said Martin. “They can return home knowing they made a difference at the school and will continue to make a difference performing EOD work when called upon.” “I’m glad to be going home and to meet my two-month old daughter,” added Pica. “The U.S. government and Mr. Martin have been great - I’d like to give a big ‘thank you’ to the school.” (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Molly Anne Greendeer)


February 2013 Road Runner  

February 2013 edition of NRD Phoenix's command newsletter.