Commander, Naval Submarine Forces in Norfolk, U.S. established a flag officer-led task force in May to focus on effectively integrating enlisted women Sailors on board multiple submarine platforms.
Vice Adm. Michael Connor stood up the task force to specifically look at best integration practices for SSBNs, SSGNs, and VIRGINIA-class SSNs.
Commander of Submarine Group Two, Rear Adm. Kenneth Perry is leading the task force. The group is charged with developing a comprehensive Plan of Actions and Milestones (POAM) by January 2014.
This POAM will mirror the previous deliberate process used to successfully integrate female officers by including feasibility studies, potential courses of action and candidate timelines. Pending the results, a detailed implementation plan will be presented to the Chief of Naval Operations by March 2015.
Female officers have been successfully integrated on board OHIO-Class SSBNs and SSGNs, and will be integrated onboard VIRGINIA-Class SSNs in fiscal year 2015.
The Navy is working with industry to design the Ohio replacement SSBN to support both officers and enlisted mixed-gender crews.
Press Release, June 7, 2013; Image: US Navy