CNAL Announces Sea and Shore Sailors of the Year for 2022
22 May 2023
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. --
Commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic (CNAL) named the Fiscal Year 2022 Sea and Shore Sailors of the Year after a week of consideration, May 19.
CNAL, Rear Adm. John F. Meier, selected and named Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Handling) 1st Class Sirita Weaver, assigned to the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), as the Sea Sailor of the Year, and Naval Aircrewman (Helicopter) 1st Class Aaron D. Primm, assigned to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 1, as the Shore Sailor of the Year.
Primm will now compete at the next stage of the Shore Sailor of the Year program at the U.S. Fleet Forces level where if he is selected to win, he will be advanced to the rank of chief petty officer.
Weaver was addressed as “Chief” upon receiving her award from Meier. With her selection as the Sea Sailor of the Year she has been meritoriously advanced to chief petty officer.
CNAL’s Force Master Chief Jimmy W. Hailey III congratulated the nominees and reflected on what made the winners, as well as the other candidates, so special.
“After spending the last five days with you all of you, I see what greatness truly is,” Hailey said. “Each and every one of you should be proud that you’re here, you should be proud of what you’ve accomplished not just this last year but your entire career that led you to this point.”
Likewise, Meier commended the highly-qualified candidates as a group, and addressed his high expectations for all of them.
“Everybody involved in our Sailor of the Year program, after a week of interacting with these amazing Sailors, knows there is no easy decision in selecting only one of them to be the CNAL Sailor of the Year,” Meier said. “I fully expect every one of these outstanding Sailors to be on the next Chief’s list.”
Weaver and Primm, along with 10 other Sailor of the Year finalists, spent the week participating in events centered on naval history and heritage, building camaraderie, mentorship, and individual boards testing their military knowledge as part of the CNAL Sailor of the Year program.
“The Sailor of the Year program is a significant investment in recognizing our Sailors and allows us to acknowledge their outstanding bodies of work,” Meier added. “It is one of the most exciting parts of my job. Once you meet these Sailors, you immediately get a strong sense of how outstanding every one of them is, and how competitive this group is as a whole. It really does make me feel good about the future of our service.”
Sailor of the Year is a time-honored tradition introduced in 1972 by Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. Elmo Zumwalt and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy John Whittet. This annual competition is held to recognize superior performance of individual Sailors, who best exemplify the ideals of professional Sailors throughout the fleet.
CNAL is responsible for seven nuclear-powered aircraft carriers, 54 aircraft squadrons, 1,200 aircraft and 52,000 officers, enlisted and civilian personnel based on the East Coast of the United States. It provides combat ready, sustainable naval air forces with the right personnel, properly trained and equipped, with a focus on readiness, operational excellence, interoperability, safety, and efficient resourcing.