By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Daniel Schumacher

BREMERTON, Wash. – The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN-74) was announced as a recipient of the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet fiscal year (FY) 2013 Retention Excellence Award (REA) Jan. 9th.

This is the third consecutive year Stennis has been recognized for exceeding the retention expectations and criteria set forth by the chief of naval operations.

“This award speaks volumes about the phenomenal teamwork, mentorship, and support provided by this crew to each of our shipmates,” said Stennis’ commanding officer, Capt. Mike Wettlaufer. “I could not be more proud of our Stennis team.”

To qualify for the award Stennis had to meet or exceed reenlistment rates of 55 percent for Sailors between zero and six years of service (Zone A); 60 percent for Sailors between six and 10 years of service (Zone B); and 71 percent for Sailors between 10 and 14 years of service (Zone C). An attrition rate of 5.5 percent or lower for Zone A Sailors was also required.

Stennis also had to meet all qualifications for the Professional Apprenticeship Career Track, a program for undesignated Sailors to receive on-the-job training to qualify for a permanent rate; and the Navy Leadership Development Program, which aims to develop essential leadership skills for all Sailors.

“We could not have gotten everything done without the great support of the departmental and divisional career counselor teams and every leader on board,” said Chief Navy Counselor Jean-Hero Lamy, from Miami, Stennis’ command career counselor. “This was a team effort.”

In recognition of earning the FY 2013 REA, Stennis’ anchors will remain painted gold and the REA pennant will be flown on the ship’s mast.

“I’m happy to be a part of our tradition of excellence,” said Navy Counselor 1st Class Preston Rodgers, from Odessa, Texas. “We constantly work towards each Sailor becoming knowledgeable about their career and opportunities available to them.”

Stennis is currently undergoing a Docking Planned Incremental Availability (DPIA) maintenance period at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility.

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