WASHINGTON NAVY YARD, DC, UNITED STATES
Story by Chief Petty Officer Brian Morales
WASHINGTON, D.C.— Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC) takes pleasure in recognizing a Hawthorne, California native as its headquarters staff Sailor of the Year.
For orchestrating the rehabilitation of critical flag mess equipment, flag mess spaces and adapting services to overcome health restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic by implementing sanitation protocols, Culinary Specialist 2nd Class Monica Davila was selected for this career milestone award. Additionally, she virtually co-lead advancement trainings with the Navy food management team for culinary specialists stationed around the national capital region.
Due to COVID-19 safety precautions, CNIC Commander Vice Adm. Yancy B. Lindsey recognized Davila during a virtual all-hand call broadcasted via Facebook Live and Microsoft Teams from the historic Washington Navy Yard, D. C. on February 24, 2022.
“A lesson that I have learned from growing up in Hawthorne that has helped me succeed in the Navy is perseverance,” said Davila. “Growing up in the inner city of mostly single parent homes with financial restraints has not been easy. It has taught me how to be strong, to make the best out of any situation and to rise above my circumstances, as well as to always want to achieve more. My mother stands as my pillar of strength and teacher of these valuable lessons.”
Davila serves as an executive chef in support of flag officers, the command’s staff and senior executive service civilians. She provides catered meals, creates menus, procures food items, processes monthly mess payments and supports formal events for distinguished guests at CNIC.
“I enjoy creating new meals and serving healthy options to everyone,” said Davila. “I’ve learned so much while being here about my job specifically and about leadership. I will take these newly learnt skills onto my next command.”
Davila joined the U.S. Navy in 2015, looking to create new opportunities for herself, travel the world, expand on education and serve her country.
“The Navy has taught me that even when faced with what seemed to be an unachievable task, there is always a way to solve and surpass expectations,” said Davila. “Even though a lot has been learnt from the Navy, my father always instilled in me ‘no matter what I put my mind to, I can do.’”
Though she describes being named the CNIC HQ Staff Sailor of Year as the biggest achievement in her career, Davila’s long-term goal is to retire after 20 years of naval service as a master chief petty officer, while guiding and mentoring Sailors along the way.
“Serving in the world greatest Navy means so much to me. It means being a role model for younger women and men that may want to do the same thing. I want people to look at me and say ‘I can do that too,’” said Davila.
Commander, Navy Installations Command oversees 48,000 employees located around the world and is charged with sustaining the fleet, enabling the fighter and supporting the family. For more news from CNIC, visit www.cnic.navy.mil or follow the command’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.