UNL honoring 5 alumni admirals today


On Nov. 4 UNL's ROTC will gather for its second alumni affiliate fall event, and this year, a special recognition and celebration will be held honoring five U.S. Navy admirals currently serving – all of whom are UNL alumni. UNL is the only ROTC program with five active-duty admirals.

Four are attending and will be congratulated in a 2 p.m. ceremony by Gov. Dave Heineman and Chancellor Harvey Perlman at Pershing Military and Naval Science building. After afternoon meetings and a drill team exhibition, the alumni will gather for the Football Friday program at Wick Alumni Center, followed by dinner at Champions Club, at which former congressman Doug Bereuter will speak.

Here is more about the alumni admirals:

Rear Adm. Sean R. Filipowski is currently serving as the Deputy Director of Operations at U.S. Cyber Command. He graduated and was commissioned in 1982 from UNL. Filipowski has held shore assignments with U.S. Naval Security Group Activity in Misawa, Japan; the National Security Agency; the Naval Network Warfare Command; and the OPNAV Information Dominance Staff. Operational assignments have taken him to the U.S. Pacific Fleet Staff; the USS Nimitz in the Persian Gulf; the Joint Special Operations Command in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Aviano, Italy; and the USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19), which deployed throughout the Western Pacific. He commanded both U.S. Naval Security Group Activity Yokosuka, Japan and Navy Information Operations Command Georgia. Filipowski holds various decorations and awards, including the Defense Superior Service Medal, two awards of the Legion of Merit, and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.

Rear Adm. Michael T. Franken assumed command of Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa in May 2011 at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Africa, after serving as the vice director, Strategy, Plans, and Policy (J5) at U.S. Central Command from 2008-2011. He is a 1981 distinguished Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps graduate from the College of Engineering at UNL. His formative operational assignments consisted of postings on guided missile destroyers, including USS Winston S. Churchill (DDG 81), USS King (DDG 41), USS Dahlgren (DDG 43) and USS Barry (DDG 52). Ashore, Franken served in four operational staff positions ranging from a readiness squadron to a four-star fleet command. He also served in the Office of Secretary of the Navy and in the Joint Staff as U.S. Pacific Command division chief and deputy JOD chief in the Joint Operations Directorate (J3).

Rear Adm. David H. Lewis is currently assigned as program executive officer for ships, where he is responsible for Navy shipbuilding for surface combatants, amphibious ships, logistics support ships, support craft, and related foreign military sales. Lewis was commissioned in 1979 through the Navy ROTC Program at UNL with a bachelor of science degree in computer science. At sea, Lewis served aboard USS Spruance (DD 963) USS Biddle (CG 34) and USS Ticonderoga (CG 47). His major command assignment was Aegis Shipbuilding program manager in the Program Executive Office Ships, where he helped deliver seven DDG 51 class ships and procured another 10 ships. Upon selection to flag rank, Lewis served as vice commander, Naval Sea Systems Command. Lewis' awards include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and various service and unit awards.

Rear Adm. Douglas J. McAneny reported as the Commandant, National War College in January 2011. He is a 1978 graduate of the UNL Naval Reserve Officers Training Unit, where he earned a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering. McAneny entered the Navy in May 1978 and qualified in submarines, earning his gold dolphins in May 1981. He has commanded on four occasions in the Atlantic and Pacific Fleets, most recently as commander, Submarine Force U. S. Pacific Fleet Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, in 2008-2010. McAneny's tours ashore include assignments with Submarine Group Two, Moored Training Ship (MTS 635), U. S. Strategic Command, Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program (NAVSEA 08) and the Joint Staff in Washington. McAneny has received three Defense Superior Service Medals, six Legion of Merit awards, three Meritorious Service Medals, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, and two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals.

Rear Adm. Robin M. Watters has been chief of staff, U.S. Pacific Command, since June 30, 2010. From February 2008 to June 2010, he was the Reserve deputy and chief of staff, U.S. Pacific Fleet. Watters was commissioned in 1977 through the UNL Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps program where he graduated with honors. After sea duty and service as a reservist, Watters was recalled to active duty in December 1990 in the Persian Gulf for six months in support of Operation Desert Storm. In February 2003, he was again recalled to active duty for eleven months in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Following selection for flag rank, Watters was assigned as deputy commander, U.S. 7th Fleet. In 2005, he concurrently performed extended active duty as deputy commander, Navy Region Northeast in support of the region's Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) effort.

More details at: http://go.unl.edu/8ng