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NAVCENT Meritorious Advances Four Sailors

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Bryan Neal Blair, U.S. 5th Fleet Public Affairs | July 15, 2018

MANAMA, Bahrain -- Four Sailors assigned to U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT) were promoted through the Meritorious Advancement Program (MAP), July 12.

Culinary Specialist 2nd Class Matthew Ndambuki, Culinary Specialist 2nd Class Amanda Law and Yeoman 2nd Class Liannedraw Sales were promoted to petty officer first class (PO1). Intelligence Specialist 3rd Class Ashton Beach was advanced to petty officer second class (PO2).

MAP is part of the Navy's ongoing talent management initiatives used to empower the command triad to advance their top-performing Sailors by providing greater authority to commands to better shape their workforce and the Navy by developing and rewarding their best talent.

NAVCENT Command Master Chief Brian McDonough emphasized why MAP is such an effective program.

“MAP packages look at the past three years of a Sailor’s career, which is unique here at NAVCENT since 95 percent of Sailors stationed here have one-year orders,” said McDonough. “When we look at these packages, we get to see what Sailors have done here, as well as what they’ve done for the majority of their time at their previous command. This shows us a large body of the Sailor’s work, and if they show sustained superior performance above their current paygrade, they are worthy of meritorious advancement.”

Sales understands that with a transition in paygrade comes a transition in responsibility and looks forward to joining the ranks of the leaders and mentors that have shaped his naval career.

"As a PO2, I have always looked up to PO1s as leaders and mentors," said Sales. "Now those PO1s are my brothers and sisters, and it's my turn to lead and mentor the next generation. I'm very thankful for this opportunity."

Ndambuki is ready for increased responsibility, and sees his advancement as an opportunity to share his knowledge and experience.

“It’s humbling that my command recognized me as worthy of the next paygrade,” said Ndambuki. “It doesn’t stop there, though. I have to pay it forward and make sure that my Sailors are ready to take that next step as well.”

Navy retention and advancement policies are aimed at ensuring the best-qualified, highest-performing Sailors are promoted and retained. The MAP supplements traditional advancement via exams and provides command authority for immediate promotion for Sailors to pay grade E4-E6.

U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations encompasses about 2.5 million square miles of water area and includes the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean. The expanse is comprised of 20 countries and includes three critical choke points at the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal and the Strait of Bab al Mandeb at the southern tip of Yemen.