Pearl Harbor-based ships and shore commands were recipients of the 2016 Retention excellence awards.
Along with Commander, Navy Region Hawaii and Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, eight of the nine ships stationed in Hawaii made the mark. The commands were USS Chung-Hoon (DDG 93), USS Hopper (DDG 70), USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53), USS Michael Murphy (DDG 112), USS O’Kane (DDG 77), USS Port Royal (CG 73), USS Preble (DDG 88) and USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110).
U.S. Fleet Forces Command created the annual award to recognize commands which sustain exceptional levels of retention and superior accomplishment in executing programs and policies which best enable Sailors to succeed in their Navy careers.
To help assist Hawaii service members and commands with these goals, Navy Region Hawaii opened a Career Information Center April 2016.
“This center has been here for less than a year,” said Region Navy Counselor Chief Robert Pagtakhan. “Already we see the positive effect it has to the entire region.”
Pagtakhan said the CIC provides services and training to Sailors and command counselors. So far, the center has provided more than 35 trainings to help Sailors make smart career choices and provided their command counselors with continuous training and outreach.
“We are open to everyone,” said Pagtakhan. “I have seen Army and Coast Guard Sailors come through these doors. We also get together with command counselors to not only hold training, but to foster networking, mentoring and peer-to-peer interaction, so that we all can create a solid foundation for our Sailors.”
Pagtakhan believes the program’s proactive approach has helped commands reach the upper-echelon of the Navy’s retention goals. This is also evident in the drastic increase in recipients of the REA from previous years. Along the water front, 88 percent of the ships received the award compared to just 54 percent the previous year.
Commander, Navy Region Hawaii’s Command Master Chief David B. Carter said the concept and implementation of the career information center has exceeded all expectations.
“Chief Pagtakhan and his team are doing an exceptional job,” he said. “The impact of the CIC is evident in the base, the region, and eight out of nine ships receiving the Retention Award.”
The CIC continues to evolve. Pagtakhan said his team is looking at ways to increase service capabilities for every service member in Hawaii.
“We are looking into Wi-Fi to allow service members without NMCI get access,” said Pagtakhan. “We are here to help, service members, ships and the shore commands succeed.”