Capt. Andrew Hale, USS Ohio (SSGN 726) (Gold) commanding officer (CO) received notice July 31 of his selection as the recipient of the 2006 Hispanic Engineers National Achievement Awards Corporation (HENAAC) award.
“I was surprised, humbled and honored,” said Hale. “It’s wonderful to be recognized by HENAAC and submitted by the Navy for this type of award.”
According to the HENAAC Web site, the candidates for the award must be a well-established manager or have project responsibility, along with eight to 19 years experience in a technical field, and should have made significant contributions in that arena. Professional achievement is judged on uniqueness of his/her obtained goal, level of responsibilities, degree of discipline for level of performance, potential as a role model, leadership ability and upward mobility and involvement with the Hispanic community.
“I don’t think I was selected because of one career achievement, however more of a compendium of milestones throughout my career,” said Hale. “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the tremendous assistance from senior mentors and hard working Sailors who have worked with me throughout my career. Any kind of success I’ve enjoyed in my career is only because I’ve had great people working with me as peers, subordinates or supervisors.”
Hale, a native of Miami, believes diversity should be celebrated because it is an extremely vital and important part of our Navy personnel program.
“Having diverse senior officers is helpful to the Navy because it is going to help the chief of naval operations meet his objective of improving diversity in the Navy,” said Hale. “It will also help him get the message out to the civilian population and the rest of the Navy on how important diversity is at all levels in the Navy.”
And for those Hispanic officers who wish to follow in his footsteps and receive this award in the future, Hale gives them these words of wisdom.
“Always remember that when you receive this award it comes with the responsibility of giving back to the Navy through your leadership and mentoring of those young Sailors and officers and helping them along the way,” said Hale.
By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Mary Popejoy, Northwest Region Fleet Public Affairs