By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Mark Meredith, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Public Affairs
| May 10, 2018
Lt. Cmdr. Alaina Gembara, a senior intelligence officer at U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, holds her Vice Adm. John Redd Leadership Award outside of NAVCENT Headquarters. The inaugural award recognizes a leader who is the epitome of a warfighter. U.S. 5th Fleet conducts maritime security operations to ensure the free flow of commerce, build and expand maritime partnerships and deter potential adversaries in one of the world's most critical maritime corridors. (Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Mark Meredith)
Lt. Cmdr. Alaina Gembara, a senior intelligence watch officer at NAVCENT, was presented the award, which recognizes a leader who is the epitome of a warfighter, according to Aquilino.
“It was a complete surprise to me,” said Gembara. “I was very, very honored. “I really have to say, I feel like I’m taking credit for others’ accomplishments. I give all credit to the team and leadership who supported me in allowing our men and women to do great things.”
Gembara stood out from the pack as she flawlessly led 35 officers and enlisted personnel on NAVCENT’s 24/7 indications and warnings watch. Her coordination across the waterfront and within the intelligence community ensured mission critical intelligence provided indications and warnings to two carrier strike groups, two amphibious ready groups and more than 80 U.S. and allied naval units operating within the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations.
In addition, Gembara led four rotating watch teams and overhauled the watch floor, changing the configuration of the space to maximize efficiency.
She also oversaw the production and dissemination of more than 300 naval message intelligence summaries, 270 time-sensitive force intelligence and threat advisories, 189 operation and intelligence briefs, and 108 NAVCENT commander’s update briefs.
“I’m very proud of the Sailors and junior officers on the I&W watch,” Gembara said. “I just let them run with it. They’ve handled every high stress, high visibility event very well, coolly and competently.”
The award is named after Redd, who served as the first commander of NAVCENT and U.S. 5th Fleet from September 1994 to July 1996.