Posted by: arbeam | December 6, 2013

Congratulations Cdr Massie: 2013 Stockdale Award

WASHINGTON (Dec. 4, 2013) Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert presents the 2013 Vice Adm. James Bond Stockdale Leadership Award to U.S. Pacific Fleet recipient Cmdr. Richard N. Massie, former commanding officer of the ballistic-missile submarine USS Maine (SSBN 741 - Gold), in the Hall of Heroes at the Pentagon. The Stockdale Leadership Award is presented annually to two commissioned officers on active duty in the grade of commander or below who are serving in command of a single unit and who serve as examples of excellence in leadership and conspicuous contribution to the improvement of leadership in the Navy.

WASHINGTON (Dec. 4, 2013) Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert presents the 2013 Vice Adm. James Bond Stockdale Leadership Award to U.S. Pacific Fleet recipient Cmdr. Richard N. Massie, former commanding officer of the ballistic-missile submarine USS Maine (SSBN 741 – Gold), in the Hall of Heroes at the Pentagon. The Stockdale Leadership Award is presented annually to two commissioned officers on active duty in the grade of commander or below who are serving in command of a single unit and who serve as examples of excellence in leadership and conspicuous contribution to the improvement of leadership in the Navy.

WASHINGTON (NNS) — The annual Vice Adm. James Bond Stockdale Leadership Award ceremony was held in the Pentagon Hall of Heroes Dec. 4.

Cmdr. Richard N. Massie and Cmdr. Leif E. Mollo received the award which recognizes two commissioned officers in the grade of commander or below who contribute to the improvement of leadership in the Navy.

Given annually to two O-5 commanding officers, the Stockdale award is widely regarded as the fleet’s top leadership prize and is unique in that officers are nominated by other eligible COs. The annual ceremony is an opportunity for the Navy to showcase two of its best leaders, who this year were both Naval Academy graduates.

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert was the guest speaker at the ceremony and presented the awards. “It’s about people; people who are willing to lead and people who are willing to step forward and say ‘I want to write about somebody who is my peer who I think is extraordinary’,” said Greenert. “Taking time to do that in this busy world is remarkable in its own sense.”

Massie, commanding officer of the USS Maine (SSBN 741) Gold Crew was the Pacific Fleet winner. Massie was highly successful with the integration of women onto submarines. “I was overwhelmed and truly proud of my crew. This was another success and another testament to the great things that that crew has done,” said Massie.

Massie helmed the Bangor, Wash.-based boomer Maine for an eventful three years. Massie led his crew on five strategic deterrent patrols, a time period that also included the gender integration of the sub force. Maine was one of the first four Ohio-class subs selected to receive a cadre of female submariners and Massie oversaw their integration and qualification on board the ship.

Massie set a climate for the female submariners and a female supply lieutenant to blend into the crew and get to work, said one former shipboard leader.

“His mantra throughout that entire process was treat everyone with dignity and respect,” recalled Lt. Cmdr. Eric Cole, who served as the sub’s executive officer for nearly two years, and who had come up from Millington, Tenn. to attend the ceremony. “We as a crew executed that flawlessly. All the officers and all the crew came together and it was, for lack of a better word, a non-event. The women came to work. They showed up and they did great.”

Cole described Massie as a family man and a leader who devoted time to mentoring his sailors and his junior officers.

The Maine’s blue and gold crews kept the sub underway a total of 349 days from January 2011, to March 2012, on deterrent missions and exercises and earned a Meritorious Unit Commendation — an award rarely given to individual boomers.

Massie, 43, is a 1993 academy graduate who is now the deputy commander of Submarine Squadron 19 in Silverdale, Wash. Massie had breakfast with the CNO and was joined at the ceremony by his wife, Melissa, his parents and his brother Kevin, an Air Force lieutenant colonel. Asked after the ceremony what it was like to win such a prestigious award, Massie said, “It’s incredibly humbling.”

Both officers were nominated by their peers and selected from nine finalists.

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