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    NUWC Division, Keyport intern graduates program, earns reputation as dedicated, adaptable logistics expert

    NUWC Division, Keyport intern graduates program, earns reputation as dedicated, adaptable logistics expert

    Photo By Public Affairs Office | Rich Whitehead, Logistics Management Specialist for NUWC Division, Keyport, is the...... read more read more



    Story by Frank Kaminski 

    Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Keyport

    Rich Whitehead, Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division, Keyport’s newest graduate of the Naval Acquisition Development Program, has established himself as a highly motivated and promising logistics professional.

    Whitehead served in the Army for 20 years, specializing in chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear matters and retiring as a chief warrant officer two. Along the way, he used the GI Bill to earn a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in occupational safety and health from Columbia Southern University.

    Following his retirement from the Army in 2017, he decided to parlay the logistics experience he had acquired during his time as a chemical officer into a civilian career with the Navy. This led him to apply to the NADP in August 2021.

    “I had a friend who was trying to get me into the program,” said Whitehead. “He said, ‘I think you should apply; you meet all the criteria and then some.’"

    Whitehead didn’t apply initially, but did so later at the urging of NUWC Division, Keyport Interactive Systems Engineering Branch Head Richard Frohlich, who contacted him to request his resume and inquire about his interest in the program.

    Whitehead said that between his Army logistics experience and a recent job as a warehouse manager for Georgia-Pacific, he was well prepared for the NADP.

    “I think [the warehouse manager position] enhanced my skills to understand processes, problem solving and customer service. It equipped me with the knowledge and the mindset to take on higher roles, which I think was a major factor with me getting selected for the NADP.”

    The NADP internship equips next generation logisticians for successful careers in government service. To be eligible, candidates must hold a bachelor's degree, achieve a minimum 2.95 grade point average upon graduation and fulfill the qualification requirements set forth by the Office of Personnel Management.

    The program encompasses a variety of careers beyond logistics, from business and information technology to engineering and contracting. It has two tracks: a three-year option for those with an undergraduate degree, and a two-year path for those with a master’s degree.

    Whitehead’s two-year program included stints in the Interactive Systems Engineering Branch and the Obsolescence Management Support Branch.

    During his time with the Interactive Systems Engineering Branch, which manages trainings and training materials for Sailors at the command, Whitehead was involved in configuration management, procurements and lifecycle support for the branch’s acquisition management system.

    Caeleigh Villarreal, a Lifecycle Logistics Lead at the branch, praised Whitehead’s performance during his time there. “Rich’s attention to detail and ability to pick up new things and assimilate them are phenomenal,” she said. “I created desk guides for him that he was able to execute, and he took a lot of initiative in terms of helping out with new processes.”

    According to Frohlich, who was Whitehead’s supervisor at the time, he “jumped in with both feet” to improve the department’s process for dispositioning its outdated or surplus assets.

    Frohlich said the department had faced challenges in the past with this process, but that Whitehead—due to his exceptional diligence and meticulous attention to detail—managed to execute the successful offloading of 266 assets, valued at slightly over $300,000.

    Whitehead began his rotation with the Obsolescence Management Support Branch in March 2023. Once he graduates, he will become a permanent Diminishing Manufacturing Sources and Material Shortages System Lead there.

    According to coworker Kelly Quinn, NUWC Division, Keyport DMSMS Project Lead, Whitehead has established himself as a consummate professional during his time so far with the department.

    “He's ready to go,” said Quinn. “He's going to be a really good logistician. He's still got a lot to learn, but he's like a sponge, and he's ready to soak it all in and just be a huge asset for NUWC Keyport.”

    Frohlich added, “Rich is a welcome addition to the Keyport team. He brings a lot of experience and has the enthusiasm and tenacity needed to achieve what our goals are here supporting the warfighter.”

    Arthur Miller, NUWC Division, Keyport DMSMS System Lead, agrees that Whitehead has what it takes to thrive as a logistician. “One thing about logistics is that it requires an individual to be flexible,” said Miller, “You have to be able to meet a need on a moment’s notice. Rich’s proven ability to adapt to changing situations showcases his remarkable flexibility.”

    Asked what advice he would give others aspiring to achieve leadership roles through NADP, Whitehead said, “It’s fast-paced. Make sure you learn everything that you can, because at some point you’re going to need it. And enjoy it, because it goes by quickly.”

    For more information about the NADP internship, visit


    About Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Keyport
    NUWC Division, Keyport provides advanced technical capabilities for test and evaluation, in-service engineering, maintenance and industrial base support, fleet material readiness, and obsolescence management for undersea warfare to expand America’s undersea dominance.



    Date Taken: 08.28.2023
    Date Posted: 08.28.2023 16:35
    Story ID: 452303
    Location: KEYPORT, WA, US

    Web Views: 332
    Downloads: 0