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Welcome to the Mess: Selected, Tested, Accepted

19 November 2021

From Chief Mass Communication Specialist Mary Popejoy U.S. Fleet Forces Command Public Affairs

Family, friends and shipmates gathered at the POW/MIA Park on Naval Support Activity (NSA) Hampton Roads in Norfolk, Virginia, to witness the pinning of 23 new chief petty officers from NSA tenant commands, Nov. 19.
Family, friends and shipmates gathered at the POW/MIA Park on Naval Support Activity (NSA) Hampton Roads in Norfolk, Virginia, to witness the pinning of 23 new chief petty officers from NSA tenant commands, Nov. 19.

The ceremony was the culmination of a six-week training period in which senior enlisted leaders introduced the chief selectees to myriad challenges designed to strengthen their leadership skills and to provide a better understanding of what it means to be the chief. 

U.S. Fleet Forces Command’s (USFFC) Fleet Master Chief John Perryman, served as the guest speaker. His remarks focused on the weight of the Chief Anchors.

“From this day forward, you will be somebody’s first chief,” said Perryman. “Let that sink in for a second and think about all of the implications that are rolled into that thought. Every single Sailor in the Navy, officer and enlisted, remembers their first chief. You are the person who will set the initial foundation, tone, and trajectory of that Sailor’s career. Their success in the Navy is tied to your ability to serve in a number of roles for them: teacher, mentor, leader, counselor, and confidant,” said Perryman.
The six-week training presented the selectees not only with the foundational knowledge to serve in their new roles as chiefs, but provided opportunities for teambuilding and camaraderie.
“I’ll never forget the feeling of walking into the auditorium full of 300 plus chiefs firing off questions one right after another,” said Chief Intelligence Specialist Charles Fischler, from USFFC. I’ve experienced a lot in my naval career, but that was like nothing I have ever been through. It was humbling and exciting at the same time,” he said.
The new chief petty officers represented seven different commands, including NSA Hampton Roads, USFFC, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, Submarine Force Atlantic, Naval Air Force Atlantic, Patrol and Reconnaissance Group, Navy Computer and Telecommunications Station Hampton Roads.   
Each selectee took center stage to be pinned and don the chief petty officer cover for the first time. A moment, many of the new chiefs will never forget.
“It feels surreal,” said Chief Personnel Specialist Lacey Thercy of USFFC. “For me it’s the rainbow after a few storms – overwhelming and exciting.”
“It feels amazing,” said Chief Information Systems Technician (Submarine) Rory Erhardt of Submarine Force Atlantic.
“It feels exciting and exhilarating,” said Chief Logistics Specialist Jennifer Fasnacht of Naval Air Force Atlantic. “Being up on stage and looking out at the crowd and seeing all the faces that are so proud of us made the moment even more perfect.”
Congratulations to our Fiscal Year 2022 chief petty officers!

ETVC Adam Aeillo             Submarine Force Atlantic 
ITC Dorothea Allen           Naval Air Force Atlantic  
MAC Troy Cloe                  Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads  
YNC Mose Dantzler          Patrol and Reconnaissance Group  
YNC Brittney Devera        Submarine Force Atlantic  
ITSC Rory Erhardt             Submarine Force Atlantic  
LSC Jennifer Fasnacht      Naval Air Force Atlantic  
HMC Nikira Ferguson       Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads 
ISC Charles Fischler          U.S. Fleet Forces Command 
ITC Lisa Gallegos               U.S. Fleet Forces Command  
ITC Brandy Gillespie         Patrol and Reconnaissance Group  
ICC Bryanne Iddings         Naval Air Force Atlantic  
ITC Alex Jefferson             NCTS Hampton Roads  
MCC Gary Johnson           Supreme Allied Commander Transformation
BUC Cody Kincaid             Supreme Allied Commander Transformation
EMC Steven Mafort         Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads  
OSC Nekeitha Paulk          Submarine Group TWO  
FCC Brandon Rowe          U.S. Fleet Forces Command  
MUC Eric Snitzer              U.S. Fleet Forces Command  
PSC Lacey Thercy             U.S. Fleet Forces Command  
AGC James Walker           U.S. Fleet Forces Command  
YNC Jerron Williams        Cruise Missile Support Activity Atlantic  
MCC Kathryn Macdonald  Naval Air Forces Atlantic  
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