By Karen S. Spangler, Managing Editor, Ho`okele
Capt. Jeffrey W. James is relinquishing command of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH) to Capt. Stanley Keeve Jr. during a change of command ceremony today on Ford Island.
James took command of JBPHH on June 3, 2011.
James is retiring from the U.S. Navy after 30 years of service and plans to stay in Hawaii.
“I’ve lived here longer than I’ve lived anywhere else in my life. This is where we’re staying after I transition out of the Navy,” he said.
“This is my home now. Hawaii means a great deal to me and my family. We’ve been welcomed, and we’ve really embraced the aloha spirit. I really enjoy the culture, a lot that Hawaii has to offer. It’s been great to serve here.
“I look forward to being able to continue to join the community as we stay here beyond my Navy time and be part of the community and still have something to give back,” he added.
James also had some advice to offer to Keeve as he takes command of joint base. “Aside from running the base, it’s really about establishing and nurturing relationships we’ve got with the community,” James said.
Prior to taking command of joint base, James served on the staff of Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor. His previous afloat assignments have included commanding officer of USS Hopper (DDG 70) and USS Pioneer (MCM 9) and as operations officer on USS Elliott (DD 967).
He served as an ordnance officer and navigator on USS Flatley (FFG 21). He also completed tours of duty at Naval Personnel Command and U.S. Northern Command.
Rear Adm. Rick Williams, commander of Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific, is the guest speaker for the ceremony. He praised James for his leadership of joint base.
“As commander of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Capt. James has been directly responsible for the Navy’s third largest fleet concentration area with more than 87,000 Sailors, Soldiers, Airmen and Marines, their families, Departmen of Defense civilians and contractors — at the Navy’s best home-port. Joint base is the home to the U.S. Pacific Fleet, submarine forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet, Hawaii Air National Guard and Pacific Air Force’s key strategic flight line in the Pacific,” Williams said.
“Capt. James’ leadership has been critical in ensuring warfighting readiness, focusing on supporting forward operations, building strong partnerships, and meeting the needs of service members and their families. He built strong ties with our friends and neighbors in the community—fostering education, understanding and a real sense of aloha through the annual makahiki and in events with the Navy League, Chamber of Commerce and other groups,” he said.
Keeve’s previous assignment was as military assistant to the Defense Business Board in the Pentagon.
A surface warfare officer, he served tours of duty on USS Reuben James (FFG 57), USS Philippine Sea (CG 58), USS Guardian (MCM 5) and USS Roosevelt (DDG 80). Some of his other assignments have included flag aide to the commander, U.S. 6th Fleet, commander of NATO Strike Forces Southern Europe, and director of professional development at the U.S. Naval Academy.
“Having served on a frigate homeported in Pearl Harbor 20 years ago, I’ve always had fond memories of my time on Oahu. Getting the opportunity to serve again on the island and to command such an important and historic joint installation is a great honor,” Keeve said.
“I will endeavor to do my very best to lead and serve the men and women of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam and to be a good partner with our neighboring towns and communities,” he said.
Williams offered welcoming remarks to the new commander.
“Today, we welcome Capt. Stanley Keeve to beautiful Hawaii. Capt. Keeve brings a wealth of experience and skills to the base and to the waterfront. He has already hit the ground running—getting involved, showing his concern for Sailors and their families, and ready and willing to make a difference.”
“He is the right leader at the right time with the right skill set, and I’m looking forward to seeing what he will accomplish in the months ahead,” Williams said.