So, what can I say about me…I am a retired Navy Commander. I joined the US Navy right out of High School in July 1976, wanting to be a Nuclear Plant operator on Submarines. After boot camp, I went to Electricians Mate school, then on to Nuclear Power School and Prototype and ended up on the USS Henry Clay, SSBN 625 (Gold) as an EM3. I earned my Submarine Dolphins and went on to be promoted to a first class petty officer, EM1(SS).
I volunteered for NR-1 duty and after being interviewed by Admiral Rickover at Naval Reactors Headquarters in 1981, was accepted and reported to NR-1 in May of 1981. NR-1 was the Navy’s only deep diving nuclear research vessel, only 140 feet long and 12 foot diameter with a living space of about 40 feet, kind of like an RV but we had 11 people on board.
Kind of like living in an RV …
I went on to earn my Gold Deep Submergence Dolphins, and qualify as Engineering Officer of the Watch, Engineering Duty Officer and Officer of the Deck. Yep this is what I looked like in 1983 as a EM1(SS).
Here is a picture of me on the right with the NR1 Hat from April 1985 National Geographic Magazine:
Here is a picture of the ship a few years after I transferred but it captures the youth and size of the ship in a configuration I remember so I thought I would put it here:
I was also promoted to Chief Petty Officer, EMC(SS) in 1984. In Oct 1984, I was selected to teach Nuclear Power School in Orlando, Florida. In 1986, I was selected and commissioned as a ensign (O-1E) as a Nuclear Limited Duty Officer, and after getting interviewed again by Naval Reactors, was assigned to a NR Field Office in Pittsburgh PA.
I worked during the day and at night went to school at the University of Pittsburgh, earning a Bachelor’s in Business Degree and then a Masters Degree in Information Science. In 2000, I was asked to move to Washington, DC for a position in the new Chief Information Office (CIO) at Naval Reactors Headquarters. In 2003 I was promoted to the CIO position and in 2006 I retired from the Navy after 30 1/2 years of service as a Commander (O-5).
I was asked to stay on as the CIO as a Department of Energy, Senior Executive Service (SES) member, and I continued to be the CIO up to my retirement from the Federal Government in November 2016 (OK, I know I am getting a little ahead of myself, but everyone knows I am leaving…..).
I met Cathy when NR-1 was undergoing overhaul at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard where her Dad was a Shift Supervisor. We got married in 1983 and have two kids, Jonathan and Erin.