With the Department of the Navy reorganization, sponsorship of the submarine community will pass from OP-02 (VADM Roger Bacon) to COMSUBLANT. It is expected that this will occur before the end of the year. RADM Tom Ryan is already onboard OPNAV as the new Director, Submarine Warfare Division (N87) and reporting to the newly established DCNO for Resources, Warfare Requirements and Assessments (N8).
Several fundamental changes will occur on the Type Com-mander staffs as a result of this organization. Some of these are:
a. Both Type Commanders will renumber existing staff codes to conform to the JCS/CINCSTRAT convention. This will not involve any major shifting of functions.
b. Both Type Commanders will stand up a requirements section to deal with future needs of our forces and interface with the Fleet Commanders and N-87 in research and develop-ment and budgeting priorities. The head of this section, to be called N8, will be a Captain.
c. COMSUBLANT will form a small group to handle community sponsorship issues pertinent to the submarine community as a whole. The head of this group will be a post commanding officer, designated as the Submarine Warfare Sponsor Officer (Code 02Z, initially Commander Lynn Wess-man).
The Submarine Warfare Sponsor officer on COMSUBLANT staff will assist with liaison concerning: submarine warfare policies, the retired community, Naval Submarine League, USNA, submarine recruiting, preservation of submarine traditions, and congressional testimony. He’ll be busy. Naval Submarine League chapters should continue to deal directly with the senior Submarine Commander in their respective areas. For example, we expect that N-87 (RADM Tom Ryan) would be the appropriate contact for many Submarine League issues specific to the D.C. area.
COMSUBLANT and COMSUBPAC will function as spokesmen on submarine matters geographically. In general, COMSUBPAC will deal with public affairs issues west of the Mississippi and COMSUBLANT with those to the east On matters involving policy, whether operational issues, public affairs, submarine warfare or personnel planning, the two Type Commanders will coordinate as they have in the past.
The establishment of the requirements section and the change of Submarine Force sponsorship from OP-02 to COM-SUBLANT are major moves. We are resolved to make these changes smoothly and without loss in dealing with outside activities. OP-02 has worked closely with the Type Command-ers to present the fleet view in Washington. We’re dedicated to ensuring there is enthusiastic, competent Submarine Force representation in D.C. during a crucial period of our history!