Executive Correspondence – Letter dtd 07/27/2005 to all BRAC Commissioners from Elton Gallegly Page: 3 of 37
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information technology) depending on which site was judged most efficient. These
consolidation efficiencies commenced in 1992 and were favorably noted during BRAC
95 site visits.
What followed in NAWCWD was a single command, headquartered first at Pt. Mugu and
later at China Lake, commanding all the technical work at both places as an integrated
organization, with subordinate Naval Air Weapons Station commands at each location to
run the support functions of the bases themselves. Incredibly, there were really only two
reasons for even identifying the two NAWCWD sites as separate entities. One involved
the US Postal Service and the need to correctly address mail. The other had to do with
detailed personnel management within the Department of the Navy and the need to have
separate Unit Identification Codes (UIC) at each site.
NAVSEA used a different construct for their consolidated field activities and allowed
each of the remaining activities renamed as Divisions, after closures occurred, to continue
to exist as separate technical commands, coordinated in their work by a Washington,
D.C. based Naval Surface Warfare Center (NWSC) headquarters staff. NSWC Port
Hueneme Division (NSWC PHD) remains as one of those technical commands. The
NSWC recently adopted a form of competency alignment under Product Area Directors
and has significantly reduced redundancy and competition between the separately
commanded Surface Warfare Center Divisions.
The Management Imperative
First within the NAWC, then quickly followed by all of NAVAIR, a Competency
Aligned Organization (CAO) management paradigm was adopted. This structure of
management aligns people by technical function or specialty to provide support for
programs without regard to physical location. NAVAIR in many ways ceased being a
headquarters organization, which it had to do because of very aggressive mandated
downsizing, and adopted a process by which leadership at all management levels was
placed where the "center of gravity" for specific functions really existed. In the case of
Ranges, Target Systems, Weapons, Electronic Warfare and other technical areas, that
meant that the NAWCWD was in charge of those areas for all of NAVAIR. Within
NAWCWD, the technical leadership for Weapons R&D is clearly at China Lake with
T&E work also being accomplished in that competency at Pt. Mugu and Patuxent River.
Technical leadership for Open Air Ranges, of which there are four within NAVAIR,
Targets (used at all the ranges), and Electronic Warfare reside at Pt. Mugu. Since, in
terms of total workload and people employed, China Lake has always been the larger
element of NAWCWD, it was decided that the headquarters (flag pole) for NAWCWD
would remain at China Lake, instead of alternating between the two sites, as had been the
original concept. However, it is extremely important to understand that the residence of
the flag officer and his immediate staff does not create an organization centered at China
Lake with a detachment at Pt. Mugu. The commander of NAWCWD maintains offices at
Pt. Mugu. He and his staff spend a considerable amount of time there, as they are the
only technical command function at both locations.
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Executive Correspondence – Letter dtd 07/27/2005 to all BRAC Commissioners from Elton Gallegly, letter, July 30, 2005; (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc19141/m1/3/: accessed March 24, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.