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US 5th Fleet’s First ELDP Held in Bahrain

By Petty Officer 2nd Class Ryan D. McLearnon, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Public Affairs | October 28, 2016

MANAMA, Bahrain – U.S. 5th Fleet’s first Combined Joint Maritime Enlisted Leadership Development Program (ELDP) was held aboard Naval Support Activity Bahrain, Oct. 24-25.


ELDP is a classroom training program for multinational enlisted service members designed to instill and improve upon six desired leadership attributes: operate with commander's intent, make sound and ethical decisions, enable the force, anticipate, communicate and mitigate risk, operate jointly and think critically using the NCO/PO Handbook published by the National Defense University.


“We ran this course several times when I was in Korea with Command Sgt. Maj. John Troxell who’s currently the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of Joint Chiefs.” said Honea. “He and I, in concert with a lot of other senior enlisted leaders on the peninsula of Korea, developed this joint combined mid-grade NCO/Petty Officer leadership symposium. I have transplanted a lot of the lessons that we had there and courses that we taught there, here for this.”


In attendance were enlisted service members from every branch of the U.S. armed forces with enlisted service members from the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and a senior enlisted course observer from Australia.


“We break out the Non-commissioned Officer/Petty Officer Handbook, ‘the backbone of the Armed Forces’, a book that’s published by the office Joint Chiefs of Staff office,” said Honea, “We break that book open and go through it chapter by chapter and highlight the major points of discussion in each chapter, that in concert with course dialogues and visits from other senior leaders in the area.”


Distinguished guests included: commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, Vice Adm. Kevin Donegan; commander of Commander, Task Force (CTF) 51 and 5th Marine Expeditionary Brigade (5th MEB), Brig. Gen. Francis L. Donovan; senior enlisted leader of CTF-51 and 5TH MEB, Sgt. Maj. Cliff Wiggins; commodore of Combined Task Force (CTF) 152, Jordanian Captain Abdelkader Almarahleh; deputy commander of Combined Maritime Forces, Commodore William Warrender; and senior enlisted leader of U.S. Central Command, Command Sgt. Maj. William Thetford.


“A forum like this offers exactly the right setting to assess current realities and to build the future we all seek for this important part of the world,” said Almarahleh.


Donegan encouraged the enlisted members to reflect on what they’ve learned and incorporate those things that will make them better as leaders and as an allied force.

“Since we work in a combined joint environment over here at NAVCENT and with Combined Maritime Forces Command, it was hugely important that we have joint flavor to this course,” said Honea. “I wanted to enhance and work on the leadership skills in mid-grade petty officers and non-commissioned officers and I wanted to do so In a combined joint environment and include our coalition partners, so that helps us build upon our partner capacity, increases loyalty and trust amongst our coalition partners at the mid-grade and senior enlisted level.”


The two day course came to a conclusion with the presentation of certificates upon graduation from Honea and Warrender.


“Just based off of the evidence of the conversations that happened in the class, as eager as everybody was to participate in the class with the comments and the commentary and the dialogue that took place inside the course, I think the course was a huge success on that level,” said Honea.


The ELDP courses will be held quarterly by NAVCENT to enrich the leadership skills of enlisted services members in coalition forces.