Usni Leadership Essay Contest For High School

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Eric Lockwood, Naval History and Heritage Command, Communication and Outreach Division

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- "How can history inform our maritime strategy today?" Your answer to that question may be the basis for an entry in the Chief of Naval Operations 2017 Naval History Essay Contest, recently announced in NAVADMIN 024/17.

According to the message, CNO Adm. John Richardson directed the contest to further understanding of how lessons from history inform the Navy's way ahead.

It should inspire "insight and dialog from across the widest spectrum of academic, operational, military and civilian personnel both from within the Naval Services and those with a sincere interest in the history of the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard."

History's impact on the modern age can be a pretty broad question, so essay entries should be able to cut across an enormous array of answers. Maybe Capt. John Paul Jones or Adm. Chester Nimitz's leadership is inspirational as a model when discharging duties; or perhaps the successful effort, in the face of overwhelming odds, of the crew of guided-missile frigate USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG 58) in saving their ship after it struck a mine is emboldening to hone damage control abilities.

But entrants don't have to write about specific subjects like those. One can also think more strategically, such as how the Navy has projected power differently across time. Unintended consequences are also fair game. If it has to do with history, today and the sea services -- write about it!

"We're looking for subjects that study the history of the U.S. Navy, for sure, [as well as] any other historical, maritime history that relates to our maritime strategy," said Cmdr. Ryan Ahler, Naval History and Heritage Command's (NHHC) assistant director for the Director's Action Group. "I think this is a really good opportunity for us to take a look at the long history of lessons learned and apply them to the present and how we maintain maritime superiority."

The essay contest is open to professional and amateur historians alike, whether they're in the Navy or not, whether they're U.S. citizens or not. Everyone has a voice and everyone will think of something different to write about which can help the Navy continue to be the best in the world. If thinking of a subject becomes a problem, NHHC's website serves as a reference for interesting subjects and existing research.

"The Navy is really looking for entries from a full spectrum of writers, not just professional historians and people who do this for a living, but also for entries from those on the deckplates," said Ahler. "The hardest part will be getting amateur historians and Sailors out in the fleet to submit, but honestly I think that's where a lot of the best stuff will come from."

If a little extra motivation is needed, winners will receive a monetary prize depending on where they place -- $5,000 for first place, $2,500 for second, and $1,500 for third. See the message for additional prizes:

The selections will be screened by the United States Naval Institute (USNI) and the finalists will be presented to a joint committee comprised of senior staff from USNI (1 person), the United States Naval Academy (1), the Naval War College (1), the Naval History and Heritage Command (1), the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (2), and one distinguished naval historian from outside the Navy.

Submissions cannot exceed 3,500 words (excluding footnotes/endnotes/sources), nor can an entry contain the author's name. All submissions will be judged blindly, so in addition to the essay, a separate attachment including a biography and complete contact information is required. Submission packages should be emailed to with the subject heading "CNO 2017 Naval History Essay Contest."

For more details, see the NAVADMIN or go to USNI's point of contact in this matter is Fred Rainbow and he can be reached via phone at (410) 295-1092, and via email at

All entries are to be submitted no later than June 30. While the deadline is a few months away, it's never too early to submit an entry.

The Naval History and Heritage Command, located at the Washington Navy Yard, is responsible for the preservation, analysis, and dissemination of U.S. naval history and heritage. It provides the knowledge foundation for the Navy by maintaining historically relevant resources and products which reflect the Navy's unique and enduring contributions through the nation's history, and supports the fleet by assisting with and delivering professional research, analysis, and interpretive services. NHHC is composed of many activities including the Navy Department Library, the Navy Operational Archives, the Navy art and artifact collections, underwater archeology, Navy histories, nine museums, USS Constitution repair facility and the historic ship Nautilus.

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Nov 09, 2016

Naval Intelligence Essay Contest: Third Place Award for "What is Past is Prologue."

FIRST PRIZE: $5,000 + 1-year USNI Membership
“Nurturing a Revolution in Decision-Making Through Improved Geopolitical Foresight” (NIEC #13-16)
By Lieutenant Andreas Xenachis, USNR

SECOND PRIZE: $2,500 + 1-year USNI Membership*
“Integrate to Dominate” (NIEC #27-16)
By Commander J. Michael Dahm, USN

THIRD PRIZE: $1,500 + 1-year USNI Membership**
“What Is Past Is Prologue” (NIEC #8-16)
By Commander Nathaniel (Nate) Bailey, USNR

By agreement, we will post the winners once they have appeared in the USNI Proceedings. We have been gratified by the response and the quality of all the entries, of which many more will be appearing in Proceedings as stand-alone articles.
In third place for his essay "What is Past is Prologue."

(CDR Nathaniel "Nate" Bailey accepts his award from NIP Chairman Tony Cothron and Mr. Fred Rainbow, chief editor of the US Naval Institute Press)

CDR Bailey enlisted in the Navy in 1993 and gained an appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy where he graduated with the Class of 1998.  After initial flight training, he was transferred to the Navy-Marine Corps Intelligence Training Center in Dam Neck, VA where he was designated a Naval Intelligence Officer in 1999.  Upon completion of Joint Targeting School (with distinction) and TOP GUN Ground School, he was assigned to an F-14D Tomcat Squadron, the Fighting Blacklions of Fighter Squadron 213 (VF-213), based at Oceana Naval Air Station, as the Aviation Intelligence Officer. During VF-213's Western Pacific deployment on the aircraft carrier USS CARL VINSON, the United States of America was attacked on September 11th, 2001. Immediately after the attacks, CDR Bailey served as a key leader in the initial targeting and intelligence planning for Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. On the first night of the war, he delivered the first of what would eventually be over four hundred intelligence, targeting, and tactical reconnaissance briefings to the combat aircrew of Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN.  Upon completion of his squadron tour, CDR Bailey was designated as the 2002 F-14 Intelligence Officer of the Year and selected to attend the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) in Monterey, California where he graduated with a masters degree (with distinction) in national security affairs and international relations in 2004.

While at NPS, he also completed JPME I through the U.S. Naval War College and was selected for the Naval Institute Award for the best thesis at NPS. CDR Bailey was then transferred to the Netherlands where he assumed duties as an intelligence staff officer at the joint four-star NATO headquarters overseeing operations in Afghanistan. While in Holland, he deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan in 2005, serving as the Chief of NATO's Human Intelligence (HUMINT) Program in Afghanistan. As Chief of the HUMINT Operations Center (HOC) within the ISAF HQ J2X, he was responsible for overseeing 85 intelligence operatives who handled hundreds of intelligence sources throughout the country. He also participated in the planning of numerous successful high-risk intelligence collection operations. After this combat deployment, he returned to NATO’s Joint Force Command Headquarters in Brunssum, the Netherlands and was selected to serve as the Chief of Plans, Policy, and Requirements for NATO's intelligence mission in Afghanistan. In this role, CDR Bailey coordinated efforts across multiple commands and nations throughout Europe, North America and Southwest Asia to build capacity of the intelligence infrastructure within Afghanistan, while also serving as the lead intelligence representative for all operational planning for ISAF. Transitioning from active duty to the Navy Reserve in late 2007, CDR Bailey served subsequently as the Training, Administrative, and Operations Department Head at EUCOM J2 0166 (Fort Meade, MD) until early 2011, when he reported as the Command Services Officer for ONI 0466 (Suitland, MD).  He assumed responsibilities as the Commanding Officer of NEIC 0106 (Dam Neck, VA) on 01 December 2011, where he led the Navy’s premier reserve HUMINT unit for two years.  He was then selected for follow-on command of SUBLANT INTEL, assuming leadership of this highly operationally-engaged unit in December 2013.

CDR Bailey has been married to Angela since 1998 where they live near Annapolis, Maryland with their four children: Lauren, Lily, Nash and Carte. Read Bailey's "What is Past is Prologue" here.

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