Capt. Stephen T. Koehler, Ike’s commanding officer, and Rex Buffington, the executive director of the John C. Stennis Center for Public Service, presented the Five Star Leadership Award to Lt. Cmdr. Martin Edmonds and the Waging Peace Award to Senior Chief Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Handling) Robert Stumm.
Edmonds, Ike’s assistant supply officer, and Stumm, Air department’s V-1 leading chief petty officer, were selected specifically for their leadership capability and the valuable service they provide to the command every day, Koehler said.
The Stennis center presents the awards annually to one officer and one chief petty officer serving aboard Ike who best exemplify the vision, integrity, courage, commitment to duty and hard work of President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Koehler said Edmonds’s leadership was critical to the success of Ike’s mission throughout 2013.
“The ship does not exist or operate without supply,” Koehler said. “Supply is an enormous job, and this is the guy that made it happen on deployment. He’s the guy that above all, at this level, is driving this train and making this ship work.”
Culinary Specialist 2nd Class Carlos Ferrer said he looks up to Edmonds.
“He really knows how to lead his people,” Ferrer said. “I’m grateful to have a leader like him to serve under.”
Koehler said that, like Edmonds, Stumm is a shining example of naval leadership.
“If you’re looking for a guy to emulate, he’s it,” Koehler said. “He cares about his people, he cares about the job, and he cares about the ship. Only after does he think of himself.”
Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Handling) 2nd Class Walter Cannon said Stumm has provided him with valuable mentorship and assistance.
“He’s probably the main reason I made second class [petty officer],” Stumm suggested. “He led me and made sure I got the things done that were needed.”
After the awards were presented, Buffington said he takes pride in recognizing the leaders serving aboard Eisenhower.
“I’m proud not just of the two that we honor tonight, but of the leadership that you all represent and the part that you all play to make Ike such a great national asset for our country.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower is currently undergoing a scheduled 14-month docking planned incremental availability at Norfolk Naval Shipyard.
By MC3 Brian Wilbur, USN; Public Affairs Office, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69)