CHINFO recognizes Northwest Navy communication excellence

Navy commands and individuals in the Pacific Northwest earned 22 awards in communication and visual information, which were presented by the Navy Chief of Information (CHINFO) during a ceremony at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor on June 28.

“This was an incredible turnout and showing in the Pacific Northwest,” said Capt. Greg Hicks, CHINFO, who presented 2017 Thompson-Ravitz and Russell Egnor awards and others, along with Master Chief Mass Communication Specialist Mike Lewis, CHINFO Senior Enlisted Advisor.

Hicks and Lewis were joined by 75 Navy uniformed and civilian communicators from afloat and shore commands stationed in the Navy’s third-largest fleet concentration area. Award presentations included the top-honors “Best in Show” Thompson-Ravitz Award for Navy Region Northwest, several wins for the USS Nimitz (CVN 68) crew, and personal recognition of Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Gretchen Albrecht as the Mass Communication Specialist of the Year – Shore. (Full awards list below.)

Following awards presentations, Hicks and Lewis also discussed the state of Navy Public Affairs and Visual Information, headquarters initiatives, career pathways for military and Navy civilian communication practitioners, and openly addressed several topics raised by attendees.

“We need deliberate communications to help solve complex communication problems,” Hicks said. “As communication leaders — and we’re all leaders — we need to continue to communicate efficiently and effectively and stay ahead of the Navy’s biggest challenges.”

Lewis encouraged attendees to submit even-stronger competition in next year’s awards programs and talked about Mass Communication Specialist career development. Lewis shared his perspective on the December 2017 release of the new MC Career Pathways, talked about brainstorming and DICE problem solving, and discussed the upcoming release of a new MC rate training manual. “It’s 600 pages of awesome,” Lewis said.

“Our community continues to manage resource constraints, so each of us has to step up and own our communication,” Hicks said. He then encouraged continued coordination and collaboration amongst attendees. “There are no lines between Public Affairs components. We’re all relevant together.”

During their brief visit, Hicks and Lewis also met with Rear Adm. Scott Gray, commander of Navy Region Northwest, and joined Mass Communication Specialist Master Chief Donnie Ryan, senior enlisted advisor for Navy Public Affairs Support Element West, in a meeting with the NPASE Detachment Northwest team.


2017 Thompson-Ravitz Awards for Excellence in Communication Planning

The Thompson-Ravitz awards promote professional communication expertise and excellence in planning, execution and results.

Honorable Mention

• Internal Communication, Afloat Large

USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74)

Category Winners

• Community Outreach, Afloat Large

USS Nimitz (CVN 68) – “Distinguished Visitor Program”

• Internal Communication, Afloat Large

USS Nimitz (CVN 68) – “Beat the Heat campaign”

• Special Events and Projects, Afloat Large

Carrier Strike Group 11 – “Malabar 2017”

• Community Outreach, Shore Large

Commander, Navy Region Northwest – “The Northwest Navy Confluence”

Thompson-Ravitz Awards BEST IN SHOW

All Unit category winners competed against each other for “Best in Show” honors. The entry receiving the highest overall rating from judges amongst 16 winners, and 54 total Unit category submissions, was awarded “Best in Show.”

• Commander, Navy Region Northwest

“The Northwest Navy Confluence”

2017 Russell Egnor Navy Media Awards

The Russell Egnor NMAs recognize excellence in media content production and leadership.


2nd Place, Media Campaign

• USS Nimitz (CVN 68)

1st Place Category Winners

• Digital Publication

“Nimitz News,” USS Nimitz (CVN 68)

• Video – Long-form Production

USS Nimitz (CVN 68) – “Nimitz OnAir Halloween Special”


3rd Place Category Winners

• Graphic Design – Infographic

MCSN Emily Johnston, USS Nimitz (CVN 68)

• Writing – Commentary

MC3 Cole Shroeder, USS Nimitz (CVN 68)

• Writing – Feature

MC3 Ian Kinkead, USS Nimitz (CVN 68)

2nd Place Category Winners

• Graphic Design – Animation

MC2 Jacob Sisco, Navy Public Affairs Support Element Detachment Northwest

• Writing – Commentary

MC2 Holly Herline, USS Nimitz (CVN 68)

• Writing – Information Story

MC2 Elesia Patten, Carrier Strike Group 11

1st Place Category Winners

• Video – Spot

MC3 Cody Deccio, USS Nimitz (CVN 68)

• Photo – Photojournalism

MC2 Wyatt Anthony, Navy Public Affairs Support Element Detachment Northwest

• Writing – Information Story

Mr. Douglas Stutz, Naval Hospital Bremerton

IndividualExcellence Award Winners


Mr. Douglas Stutz, Naval Hospital Bremerton


MC1 Gretchen Albrecht, Naval Hospital Bremerton

(Also earned the Navy/Marine Corps Commendation medal)

Full list of Navy 2017 Thompson-Ravitz and Russell Egnor Award Winners

DoD Defense Media Award

2nd place unit category Winner

• Long-Form Production Video

USS Nimitz (CVN 68), “Nimitz OnAir Halloween Special”

Humanitarian Service Medal

For extensive coverage and documentation of hurricane response and recovery, presented by MCCM Donnie Ryan, NPASE West Senior Enlisted Advisor

• MC1 Ty Connors

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