When is the last time that you called up our webpage? Just in case you have forgotten, the address is
The reason that I mention the webpage is that as of January 1st it has a new look. Thanks to the work of Ray LeCompte and his son, Lance, (mostly Lance!) the website has a new, modern, fresh and clean look to it. Take a peak and let me know what you think. I use the website and the OpPlan as marketing tools when I am looking to attract speakers. They have been very helpful tools. Thanks to Hal, Ray and Lance for their excellent work.
At the time that I am writing this column, we have a speaker for our luncheon on 12 February. The PAO for COMLCSRON ONE, LT Erica Young, reports that she has a volunteer to speak to our group, ABHC Luke Willdigg. What is interesting about this speaker is that he will be briefing us on the newest class of ship in the U.S. Navy.
Moreover he might be able to tell us how the class of ship is fairing and also something about the activities of the USS Fort Worth (LCS-3) that was assisting in the search for the Air Asia plane that went down in the ocean last month. Coincidentally, aircraft from HSM-35 were aboard the Fort Worth and participated in the search. Our speaker for 9 April is CDR Chad Falgout, the C.O. of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron Three Five (HSM-35) which is the Navy’s first composite squadron with the MH-60R designator Seahawk and MQ-8B/C designator Fire Scout (unmanned rotary-wing aircraft) for expeditionary missions. HSM 35 is the first to support littoral combat ships.
Our speaker for 12 March is Captain Jonathan S. Spaner commander of Sector San Diego and San Diego Captain of the Port. Captain Spaner holds an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), a B.S.cum laudefrom the United States Merchant Marine Academy where he was the Regimental Commander, and is a distinguished graduate from U.S. Navy Pilot Training. He holds the “Key to the City” from Traverse City, Michigan for citizenship, is a former fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, and is a former White House Fellow.
We still need volunteers to help run this organization. We have slots available at all levels of participation. A staff position is very rewarding and gratifying. I, personally enjoy having the opportunity to go out and represent GPS in the community. As staff officers we do receive invitations to various activities that do not necessarily get extended to our membership, usually because of time and communication challenges. If you want to be more active in GPS, just let any of the staff officers know or plan on attending one of our monthly meetings that take place at the Elk’s Lodge on the first Thursday at 1200. Please contact me or one of the staff officers in advance of attending to make sure that we have not altered our meeting place.
We do hope to see you at the next meeting. We are making the presentation of awards to the SOQs and the Sailors of the Year from NWSSB on 12 February. That will be our largest contingent of Sailors yet: 8 SOQs and 2 SOYs. Make sure to attend and take the opportunity to meet and greet these hard working Navy personnel. See you on the 12th.