By: Chief Mass Communication Specialists Brian Morales, Commander, Navy Installations Command Public Affairs
WASHINGTON – A Fort Lauderdale, Florida native currently assigned to Naval Support Activity Naples, Italy was selected as the 2020 Shore Enterprise Sailor of the Year at Commander Navy Installations Command headquarters at the Washington Navy Yard, Feb. 6.
Navy Counselor 1st Class Asha Clark was selected from among 71 other installation Sailor of the Year recipients to earn the prestigious award.
“Remember that this is not so much about the past and what you’ve done, but it’s about the future and what we’re going to ask you as you head into the next step,” said Vice Adm. Mary Jackson, commander of CNIC. “You are all winners.”
Clark, representing Navy Region Europe, Africa Central, was among the three finalists who went before the CNIC Sailor of the Year board conducted by a panel of senior enlisted leaders.
“Dedicated to the Navy mission and my Sailors, I strive to provide the absolute best support to my command, my Sailors and the Navy,” said Clark.
The other two candidates who competed for the CNIC award were Air Traffic Controller 1st Class Russell A. Churchwell, from Sapulpa, Oklahoma representing Naval Support Facility Diego Garcia and Master-at-Arms 1st Class Luis A. Rodriguez, from Hialeah, Florida representing Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
“Getting to know NC1 over the last few days, she absolutely deserves it,” said Rodriguez. “I know what my NC does in my command and doesn’t matter if we protect all the Sailors in the Fleet if there’s not an NC to keep them in the Navy to take our spots. I don’t think I couldn’t have come second to anyone better.”
“The Navy is not just a job, it's the people in the Navy that make it what it is,” said Churchwell. “I have always tried to be there for all Sailors who needed assistance, any time day or night overcoming any obstacles that were between those who needed help and myself.”
Each Sailor was invited to tour the National Capital Region, including: the White House, the Capital Building and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery.
They competed in a final board that tallied traits in job performance, contributions to command climate, peer group involvement, educational accomplishments, physical fitness standards and participation in community service activities. Churchwell’s board was performed remotely due to obligations.
“There are no winners and losers here,” said CNIC Force Master Chief Steven Timmons. “They are already winners. I think I can speak for all us master chiefs here. We’re glad we didn’t have to compete against them because their achievements as first class petty officers are just outstanding. I’m really proud of them.”
Clark has served in the Navy for more than 14 years, starting her naval career as a boatswain’s mate in 2005, serving aboard USS Germantown (LSD 42).
“I just want to thank all my Sailors,” said Clark. “All my Sailors being there for me, leading me on, and accepted my mentorship whether you disagreed or not.”
“Every single one of your Sailors made it to the region level,” said Jackson as she addressed the region command master chiefs whom conducted the panel. “Please thank them and pass on my personal congratulations to each one of them. Even though they didn’t get here, they are represented and they are the best of the best. I couldn’t be more proud.”
Under the Chief of Naval Operations, Navy Installations Command is responsible for providing support services for the fleet, fighter and family with more than 52,000 military and civilian personnel under 10 regions and 71 installations worldwide.