posted on September 22, 2011 09:52
Can it actually be the second week of September already? The pace never slows but I suppose that keeps us all off the streets at night. As some of you know it has been a bit strange around here weather wise with the earthquake and then the heavy rains as the remnants of the gulf storm passed through. We actually had four deaths due to drowning in the D.C. area, one man washed out of his backyard. Our roof has sprung another leak but that happens from time to time (flat roof) and we will take care of it.
Today we had a visit from CAPT Tom Snyder MD, the President of our newly reactivated San Francisco chapter. Tom and his chapter will help us with our NROTC programs at Cal and Stanford. If any of the rest of you are interested in helping out with a school near you please let Bill Overend and me know. Bill is coordinating that program for me. We have recently contacted the COs of the NROTC units with which we established programs last year as we spool up for this academic year.
Last week Bill Overend, Joe and Kathy Quaglino represented us very well at the Centennial Tailhook meeting in Reno, NV. They signed up a number of new members and we learned a lot for our next foray into similar events. We will be back at Hook next year and we intend to be at the Surface Navy Association pow wow here in D.C. and the Sea Services Leadership Association event as well.
Last week I had a good meeting with VADM Debbink and we discussed his views on the various proposals for changing the military retirement system. This morning Master Chief Featherstone and I were back in the Pentagon for an interview with the new Reserve Force Master Chief, Chris Wheeler. Look for that in the October magazine.
While in the CNR offices I asked the staff if the Admiral was getting retirement issue questions when he was visiting the field. The answer was “OH YES, all the time.” Please go to our home page and read the blogs on Happening in Washington that may affect YOU. We are working hard to ensure that congress doesn’t do irreparable harm to our all volunteer force in a debt solution stampede. You can comment on the blogs there too and all of that increases participation and increases the click rate on the web. That stuff is important and so simple for you to do.
Speaking of Navy, remember that beginning with the Dec/Jan issue we will be publishing every other month. Look for more e-newsletters and more info on the web. For those of you who contribute every month please continue to write, maybe not 12 articles but more than six because we want to put them on the web. I very much appreciate that you are tying your columns to the monthly theme. We will pick some of your columns to add to our e-newsletters and the midshipmen newsletter. I would also remind you that I would like to keep association business out of the magazine as much as possible and those things can certainly be on the web.
I may have mentioned before but we are now an Associate Member of the Washington Veterans Day Committee. Joe Quaglino and I talked about it way back when he was President but this year we finally got around to doing something about it. Thanks to CAPT Puzon for filling out the paperwork we applied and were selected (not everybody was). This opens up opportunities to plan for involvement in the Washington ceremonies, wreath laying, etc. At the recent committee meeting attended by Ike and I, Secretary Shinseki acknowledged us and thanked AUSN for participating. Look for a piece from the Secretary in our November magazine.
Other Irons in the fire right now include work on our project with the PBS program Biography. We have agreed on 19 October and the date for the video taping and will do it at the museum in the Washington Navy Yard. We have several individuals who have agreed to help tell the story of how the Association has helped them or their family. I am excited to say that Senator John McCain has agreed to be a spokesperson for us. Too early to say that is in the bag because his schedule is subject to change but exciting nonetheless.
At this point I paused to watch the White House Medal of Honor Ceremony for Sergeant Dakota Meyer. It is humbling to think of what some of our very best have done for this country. At the same time it should increase our resolve to ensure that our Navy and Marine Corps remain strong and that AUSN works to be sure that our veterans are properly cared for.
Our next Navy Now Forum is set for the 17th of November. I have included our save the date piece that will mail early next week. Some of you have industry contacts who might be interested in attending or sponsoring a table. Please take action and help us build this event. Send your contact information to me or to Kenya.
That’s it for this edition.