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    CFAO Holds Change of Command Ceremony

    CFAO Change of Command 2021

    Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class David Krigbaum | WHITE BEACH, Japan (Dec. 16, 2021) Capt. Patrick Dziekan, left, relieves Capt. Scott...... read more read more

    KADENA, Japan (Dec. 16, 2021) Commander, Fleet Activities Okinawa (CFAO) held a change of command ceremony onboard the CFAO White Beach Naval Facility Dec. 16, 2021. Capt. Scott Hardy turned over with Capt. Patrick Dziekan as commanding officer.

    This is the first command-wide ceremony held at CFAO since the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in the fall.

    Commander, Navy Region Japan Rear Adm. Carl Lahti came as the guest speaker. Dignitaries present included Ambassador in Charge of Okinawan Affairs Naofumi Hashimoto, Okinawa Defense Bureau Director General Isao Ono, and Okinawa’s U.S. military leadership, Japan Coast Guard and self-defense force leadership. Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Capt.
    Haruhiko Morishita, JMSDF Sub-Area Activity Okinawa commanding officer, presented Hardy a JMSDF letter of commendation on behalf of Vice Adm. Katsuto Deguchi, JMSDF Sasebo Naval District commandant. It cited Hardy’s strong sense of responsibility, excellent insight, and amicable personality as having contributed greatly to strengthening the relationship between the
    JMSDF and U.S. Navy.

    Lahti also commended the command’s accomplishments under Hardy’s leadership. He cited CFAO’s achievement of the Occupational Safety and Health Gold Award for four years despite being the only naval command in Japan to possess both air and port operations. During the pandemic CFAO transported III Marine Expeditionary Force Marines for deployment and as a
    United Nations Command-Rear installation CFAO handled port calls for French and Canadian vessels. He also highlighted CFAO’s engagement with local communities with maintaining positive relationships.

    “The spirit and resolve you have shown in developing effective solutions has been deeply inspiring,” Lahti said of the command. “I am confident you have the grit it takes to rise to the challenges that we will continue to face with the challenges we will face in the future. Maintain your focus, maintain your commitment to mission readiness. Thank you for serving and representing your country with pride, and with honor.”

    Hardy departs Okinawa to teach naval science and take command of the Cornell University Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps. During his final speech as commanding officer, Hardy credited and thanked his Sailors for the achievements of the past three years.

    “You are an irreplaceable, integral part of our efforts to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific, a peaceful region, and a global stage free of coercion that’s adherent to a rules-based order,” said Hardy. “And when we all were faced with the uncertainties and risks of this pandemic last spring and in the months to follow, up to this day, you adjusted and readjusted, and continued to step up and find creative ways to accomplish the mission while keeping our No. 1 priority of taking care of our people and community at the forefront.”

    Prior to taking command of CFAO, Ellison Bay, Wis. native Dziekan was executive assistant and acting chief of staff to Commander, Navy Region Mid-Atlantic Rear Adm. Charles Rock. He joined the Navy as a yeoman in 1990 and was commissioned in 1999 through the Broadened Opportunity for Officer Selection and Training program. He graduated from George Washington University with a bachelor’s in history and also holds a master’s in national security and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval War College.

    In his remarks Dziekan said he was humbled and excited to take command.
    “All of our installations have a dynamic mission of providing base operations support to the Forward Deployed Naval Forces of the U.S. Navy as well as the forces of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, and the United Nations Command-Rear,” said Dziekan. “Together with our mission and community partners, we play a vital role in maintaining peace, prosperity, and
    stability throughout this region, and in maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific.”

    Dziekan is projected to command CFAO for the next three years. Headquartered on Kadena Air Base, CFAO maintains and operates facilities to support the U.S. Navy’s naval and aviation assets in the Indo-Pacific.



    Date Taken: 12.15.2021
    Date Posted: 12.15.2021 23:41
    Story ID: 411236
    Location: OKINAWA, JP
    Hometown: ELLISON BAY, WI, US

    Web Views: 307
    Downloads: 1