PACIFIC OCEAN (NNS) — The amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) was recognized for the second consecutive year as the winner of the large afloat category Capt. Edward F. Ney Award for food service excellence, March 7.
The Ney award, which was established in 1958, is given each year to the galley that displays an attention to detail and excellence in food service such as general sanitation, administration, training documentation and service.
For the food service officer aboard America, Chief Warrant Officer 2 Mo Hall, this award was a representation of the approach America takes in making sure they uphold the highest standard in excellence yearround.
“Winning consecutive Ney awards means that we are consistently striving to provide the best customer and food service support to team America,” said Hall. “It is humbling and a great honor because it is very rare that an afloat command wins back-to-back.”
After hearing that the America had received the Ney Award, Cmdr. Ernan Obellos, America’s supply officer, spoke with the Sailors that encompass the food service division, to recognize them for their hard work and to commend them on their success.
“Winning the award means that the understanding of what Ney is all about has been retained and improved upon,” said Obellos. “Achieving the standard is easy because being above the standard is a culture for us, and we are always prepared for it.”
To earn the Ney award, ships must pass a series of inspections to earn a nomination. To do that, America set a standard to guarantee they would qualify.
“We have a motto within food service: ‘Food service doesn’t stop,'” said Culinary Specialist 1st Class Arthur Johnson, food service division leading petty officer. “It doesn’t stop from food production to cleaning. We continuously uphold that standard, day in and day out.”
America was pier-side in Dubai and operating during the halfway point of its maiden deployment at the time of the inspection. With all the operational commitments from the command, the food service division was still able to shine during their thorough evaluation.
“While we were in Dubai, we catered the reception that kicked off the International Dubai Air Show two days prior to the Ney inspection,” said Ridley. “While most of the crew was able to enjoy liberty in the country, my culinary specialists sacrificed that time to ensure we put forward our best effort in hopes of winning for the second year in a row. It’s a great feeling to see that effort paid off.”
America is an aviation centric amphibious assault ship that provides forward presence and power projection as an integral part of joint interagency and multinational maritime expeditionary forces. It will support Marine aviation requirements, from small-scale contingency operations of an expeditionary strike group, to forcible entry missions in major theaters of war. America is currently underway preparing for deployment later this year.
For more news from USS America (LHA 6), visit www.navy.mil/local/lha6/.