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NEWS | Sept. 26, 2018

Anchors for all: Chief Pinning Ceremony honors Sailors, Airmen, Marine

By Airman 1st Class Joshua R. Maund 628th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Team Charleston celebrated with their newest chief petty officers during a pinning ceremony Sept. 21, 2018, at the All Saints Chapel at Joint Base Charleston’s Naval Weapons Station.

The six-week training program, designed to prepare Sailors for the responsibilities of being a senior noncommissioned officer, also included members from two other services.

Three Airmen and a Marine trained side-by-side with their Navy classmates, seeking a different perspective on professional development and leadership. The opportunity was extended to service members who have recently been selected for promotion to the senior NCO tier.

“I have family members in the Navy and I took advantage of the opportunity,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Michael Gibbons, 628th Security Forces Squadron Phoenix Ravens program manager. “I feel that I am able to reach out and better communicate with our sister service and ask for help if I need to.”

Each member of the class is assigned a senior noncommissioned officer sponsor, responsible for passing down the knowledge and skills needed to be a leader in today’s force. At the ceremony, all selectees donned the cap marked with the symbol of a Navy chief, the anchor, signifying their fitness for leadership and completion of the time-honored tradition.

“Success as a chief is hard work,” said U.S. Navy Command Master Chief Jon Lonsdale, Joint Base Charleston command master chief. “It demands a dramatic skill set and you do it with a smile on your face. Being successful as a chief is going to bed knowing that you gave 110 percent to the people you lead. As a leader you get the opportunity to leave a legacy.”

The goal of the program is to challenge the selectees and reinforce core values such as teamwork. A demanding physical training regimen, coupled with intensive hands-on leadership coaching, gives the new selectees the tools they need to lead the Sailors, Airmen and Marines of tomorrow.

“The inclusion of the Air Force into the program helped with networking around base and I made a few friends while doing it,” said U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer Idonique Rene, Naval Health Clinic Charleston biomedical repair technician. “Having Air Force in our class made the experience very unique.”

Inclusion of sister services in time-honored traditions fosters interoperability between service members.

“My Air Force counterparts were top notch,” said Rene. “I think having Navy, Air Force and Marines all working together only makes us stronger.”

The joint element of Team Charleston benefits its service members by fostering tradition, providing unique training opportunities and building leaders for the future.