Master Chief Petty Officer Mario Rivers hails from Pensacola, Florida where he graduated with honors from Booker T. Washington High School May of 1994. Continuing his father’s legacy, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy a month after graduation. Upon completion of Recruit Training in Great Lakes, IL, he attended Seaman Apprentice Training.
The commencement of his sea duty began in 1995 as an undesignated Seaman Recruit onboard USS SUPPLY (AOE 6) in Norfolk, VA. As an ambitious Sailor, he converted to the Ships Serviceman rate in 1996. During his tour, he earned his Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist pin, and quickly advanced to the rank of Petty Officer Second Class.
November 1999, Master Chief Rivers transferred to Fleet Training Center (FTC) Norfolk where he was a Ships Serviceman “C” School instructor for Resale Operations Management and Barber curriculum. As an instructor at FTC Norfolk, he was hand-selected to create and teach the first Resale Operations Management II curriculum. While serving at FTC Norfolk, he received his certification for Master Training Specialist, advanced to Petty Officer First Class, and was selected as the 2002 Instructor of the Year.
Master Chief Rivers began his next sea tour onboard the USS HAYLER (DD 997) in Norfolk, VA. While onboard, he deployed to the 4th Fleet to conduct Counter Drug Operations, and was a member of its decommissioning crew. From August 2003 to January 2007, he was stationed onboard USS THE SULLIVANS (DDG 68) in Mayport, FL. Under his guidance, the Sales and Service Division was awarded the prestigious 2005 "Best of Class", and two consecutive "Ships Store Excellence" awards. Prior to ending his tour at sea, he was promoted to Chief Petty Officer.
During February 2007, Master Chief Rivers reported to Navy Supply Corps School Athens, Georgia as a Supply Corps Basic Qualification Course instructor. He was directly responsible for the training, mentorship, and subsequent graduation of 620 Naval Officers. During his tour of duty, Master Chief Rivers was advanced to Senior Chief Petty Officer, selected as Navy Supply Corps School 2008 Instructor of the Year, and awarded the 2008 Senior Enlisted Instructor of the Year for the Center for Service Support. Following his tour at Navy Supply Corps School, Master Chief Rivers transferred to the USS IWO JIMA (LHD 7) in July 2010
Serving as Division Chief and Sales Officer at USS IWO JIMA (LHD 7), his leadership was instrumental in the USS IWO JIMA winning the 2011 “Ships Store Excellence” award. While onboard, he applied for and was selected into the Command Senior Chief program, fulfilling a lifelong career aspiration. Master Chief Rivers was hand selected by US FLEET FORCE Master Chief Clark to facilitate the Fleet CPO Training team in March of 2013, and was subsequently advanced to Master Chief Petty Officer.
December 2013, Master Chief Rivers became the third Command Master Chief onboard the USS JASON DUNHAM (DDG 109). While onboard, he established the highest standards of excellence and produced exceptional results culminating in 2015 Battle Efficiency Award, 2015 Unit Tactics Award, two consecutive Retention Excellence awards, and the ships first opportunity to fly the Enlisted Surface Warfare Pennant.
Assuming the duties as Command Master Chief of the USS SAN JACINTO in May 2016, Master Chief Rivers was a driving force behind achieving the 2016 and 2017 Battle Efficiency Award as the best cruiser in Carrier Strike Group 10. He aggressively led the crew through a highly successful integrated training cycle, a seven-month deployment to the FIFTH and SIXTH Fleet, and the first ever Optimized Fleet Response Plan phase for a cruiser. After two years onboard the USS SAN JACINTO, he received orders to Naval Air Station Pensacola (NASP), Pensacola, FL.
Upon reporting to Naval Air Station Pensacola in May 2018, Master Chief Rivers eagerly assumed the position and responsibilities of NASP Command Master Chief. His business acumen and dynamic leadership supported 126 mission partners being serviced by 25,000 military and civilian employees, and earned the command its third consecutive Retention Excellence award. His invaluable deckplate and executive leadership were essential in supporting the Commanding Officer mission, and as well as the needs of the staff in day-to-day operations and times of crisis.
Currently, Master Chief Rivers is stationed at Commander Navy Region Hawaii as Region Command Master Chief.
His military education includes Ships Serviceman “C” schools, and multiple shipboard damage control, firefighting, and Naval Leadership Courses. He is an honor graduate of the Navy’s Senior Enlisted Academy (Class 153 Grey), Command Master Chief/Chief of the Boat Course (Class #112), Senior Shore Leadership Course, and Navy Senior Leader Seminar. Master Chief Rivers’ awards and decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal (2 awards), Navy Commendation Medal (4 awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (8 awards), Good Conduct Medal (8 awards), Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal and numerous individual, campaign, and unit awards.