From the moment the 2014 Sea- Air-Space Exposition closed,
the Navy League staff began planning
what they hoped would be something truly special, a commemoration of the expo’s 50th anniversary.
What was presented this year at the
Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor,
Md., was a four-day celebration of
“ 50 Years of Maritime Excellence &
Innovation,” a true collaboration between the Navy League, sea service
leaders, industry, academia, and the
Naval Sea Cadet and Navy League
Cadet Corps that made me very
proud to be a Navy Leaguer.
“If you want to help educate and contribute to outreach, then support the Navy League, and you will support us,” Vice Chief of Naval Operations ADM Michelle
In partnership with the Office of Naval Research,
our STEM Institute held the first-ever Naval STEM Exposition on April 12, setting a tone of high energy and
enthusiasm for the week.
Sea-Air-Space gave the Navy League the opportunity to
honor some extraordinary people. It was my pleasure to
preside over a special 50th Anniversary Reception on
April 12, where Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) ADM
Jonathan Greenert received the Admiral Arleigh Burke
Leadership Award for his professional accomplishments.
Irwin F. Edenzon, former corporate vice president and
president of Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Ingalls Shipbuilding division, received the Fleet Admiral Chester W.
Nimitz Award for his contributions to our nation’s maritime strength at the April 14 black-tie dinner.
The kick-off event on April 13 was the Service Chiefs
panel. ADM Greenert, Marine Corps Commandant Gen
Joseph Dunford, Coast Guard Commandant Paul Zukunft
and Maritime Administrator Paul “Chip” Jaenichen discussed the missions of their respective services and the
challenges they face under current fiscal constraints.
A very different panel later that day discussed how
interrelated the problems of the maritime world are and
how allies and friends can work together to protect the
freedom of the seas. This International Leadership
Panel was originated and led by our
CNO, and included ADM Zukunft
and service leaders from France,
Japan, Colombia, Romania, Singa-
pore and Australia.
There were a variety of other pan-
els and floor speakers every day,
some of which are featured in this is-
sue, beginning on page 66. Complete
Sea-Air-Space coverage can be found
We also were honored to have
some very special guest speakers at
our luncheons and dinner. Navy
Secretary Ray Mabus discussed the
importance of speeding up techno-
logical advances and innovation.
“For 50 years, the Navy League has showcased new
concepts and technology aimed at enhancing our plat-
forms, systems and warfighting,” he said April 15.
Other luncheon speakers were Gen Dunford on April
13 and ADM Zukunft on April 14. Gen Dunford spoke
about providing the proper numbers and qualifications
of small unit leaders and integration with the Navy, while
ADM Zukunft discussed the missions to which the Coast
Guard is directing its people, resources and energy.
At the Congressional Breakfast on April 14, Frank
Kendall, undersecretary of defense for Acquisition, Tech-
nology & Logistics, discussed the Defense Department’s
drive to be more innovative. And we were pleased to
have among our special guests at the black-tie dinner
Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff ADM James
Winnefeld, who delivered a pointed speech about the
negative effects of budget cuts and sequestration.
On the sold-out show floor, large and small businesses
had the opportunity to talk with government and military
officials about their products and services. Throughout
the four days, attendees were provided with opportunities
to socialize and meet new friends, and learn about ways
we can better support our men and women in uniform.
The Navy League — Trusted Partner of the Sea Services
Biggest, Best Sea-Air-Space
By JAMES H. OFFUTT, Navy League National President