BY DEBBIE DORTCH, CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS, NAVAL SUPPLY SYSTEMS COMMAND
More than 2,000 Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) employees from around the world attended a town hall celebration in person or via video teleconference on April 26 to celebrate NAVSUP’s 50th Anniversary.
The celebration was hosted by NAVSUP Headquarters in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania and featured previous NAVSUP commanders as guest speakers. Current NAVSUP Commander Rear Adm. Jonathan A. Yuen was keynote speaker. NAVSUP’s Vice Commander John C. Goodhart served as master of ceremonies.
“The continuing thread for NAVSUP is our people; we’re not just a team but a family,” said retired Rear Adm. Edward K. Walker Jr., commander NAVSUP 1984-1988 and 35th Chief of Supply Corps.
“I look back upon my time as the commander NAVSUP with a great deal of fondness and pride,” said retired Rear Adm. Keith Lippert, commander NAVSUP 1999-2001 and 41st chief of Supply Corps. “I thoroughly enjoyed working with a very professional workforce. We are blessed as a nation to have such a talented and dedicated workforce at NAVSUP to deal with challenges. I am very confident the future of NAVSUP will continue to be very challenging and very successful.”
“As I reflect on my time as the NAVSUP commander, I continue to be impressed by the NAVSUP Team’s ability to balance and contribute to the success in two major challenges facing our Navy at that time - the continued war effort in the Middle East and the increased focus on operating our naval forces as business and warfighting enterprises,” said retired Rear Adm. Daniel H. Stone, commander NAVSUP 2004-2007 and 43rd chief of Supply Corps. “The professionalism and technical competency of the NAVSUP organization, both at headquarters and in the field, enabled the fleet to operate successfully in combat operations around the clock and around the world. The names have changed over the years, but the results have not. Warfighter trust never wavered.”
“My most important memory is the relevance of NAVSUP and the good work that this great team did. We were aligned with everyone and they were aligned with us. Our partnerships generated seats at the table for NAVSUP and NAVSUP’s accomplishments were celebrated everywhere,” said retired Rear Adm. Mark Heinrich, Commander NAVSUP 2011-2013 and 46th chief of Supply Corps. “I am confident you will continue to adapt and face the challenges that are brought before you and succeed in supporting the needs of the warfighter, and improving the quality of life for our Sailors and their families.”
“Since 1966, NAVSUP has reorganized and realigned many times to meet the demands of our Navy, sometimes gaining functions, passing on functions, or consolidating functions. As the Navy moved through the Cold War and Vietnam, through Desert Storm, as we sent our brothers and sisters to Iraq and Afghanistan, the Navy has become stronger and NAVSUP has proactively supported. Through it all–while other commands were swallowed up in big government–NAVSUP and the Navy Supply Community has stood independent and relevant,” Yuen said.
“NAVSUP is independent because we cannot be absorbed–we protect and control the Navy’s logistics and supply chain–with direction. We are the warfighters who send our Sailors and Marines out to fight and bring them home. We are relevant because of our dedication to our people, our customers, and our processes. We take care of our team and we provide quality-of-life support to the warfighter. That’s a job that will never go away,” Yuen said.
NAVSUP was established May 1, 1966, as a redesignation of the Bureau of Supplies and Accounts (BUSANDA) to support the Chief of Naval Material Command, a new command that was created after a major Navy Department organization earlier that year. Rear Adm. Herschel Goldberg was the last chief, BUSANDA, and the first commander NAVSUP. The Navy reorganization also designated the commander NAVSUP as chief of Supply Corps.
Today, NAVSUP’s mission is to provide supplies, services, and quality-of-life support to the Navy and Joint warfighter. We employ a diverse, worldwide workforce of more than 22,500 military and civilian personnel. We manage supply chains that provide material for Navy aircraft, surface ships, submarines and their associated weapons systems. We provide centralized inventory management for Navy’s non-nuclear ordnance stockpile. We provide a wide range of base operating and waterfront logistics support services, coordinating material deliveries, contracting for supplies and services, and providing material management and warehousing services.
NAVSUP is responsible for many of the quality-of-life programs that touch the lives of Sailors and their families every day, including Navy Exchanges, Navy Lodges, the Navy Personal Property Program, and the Navy Postal System. We administer the Navy Food Service Program, with responsibility for the policies and procedures that govern the day to day operations of general messes afloat and ashore.
“NAVSUP is resilient and will continue to change to meet the needs of our people, customers, and nation,” Yuen added. “It’s because of our past that we have such a strong presence today. It’s because of our presence that we look forward to a bright future.”