Good morning Shipmates!
I am pleased to announce that we held our first Board of Directors meeting last night. The Board has given my staff and I a green light for the new initiatives. First, and foremost, I want to announce that Mike Yates has been selected to become the first National Commander of the Association. Mike will be posting his official comments on the page and website. We are currently redesigning the website and making it user-friendly, as well as, transitioning the new staff to help with deck log research. I look forward to his leadership and hope you're excited about the changes coming!
Michael J. Little
I want to thank Mike Little and the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans
Association Board of Directors for this opportunity. I look forward to
working with them.
The BWNVVA has been around for many years doing some very good work for
Blue Water Navy Veterans. I hope to continue to do this type of work and
help to bring the BWNVVA to be an even stronger group than it already is.
We need to be able stand up with other Veterans Organizations with our
heads held up high and continue the fight. We need to be able to go up to
any Member of Congress and when they hear we are from BWNVVA they will
respect us and be willing to work with us.
One thing I want to make clear. BWNVVA is working hard with Blue Water Navy
Vietnam Veterans, BWNVVA is not only for them but for all Navy Veterans,
Marine Veterans, and Fleet Marine Veterans, Active Duty Members, and all
other Veterans. We all can work together and help each others
What does this mean for the BWNVVA. It means in the next year I am going to
be busy. There is a lot of planning to do in setting the direction of the
BWNVVA, I need to define and fill some other position and I need to do this
while working on H.R. 299, S. 422, H.R.809 and any other Bills that we need
to work on.
For those of you on the Blue Water Navy Awareness Facebook page, you may
ask what does this mean for Blue Water Navy Awareness, I want to bring BWNA
and BWNVVA closer together so we are all working together. Both pages will
stay as they are. I would like to suggest that if you are on one but not
the other you may want to make sure you are signed up for both just in case
one has more information than the other.
For those who don’t know me. I will tell you a little about myself. I am a
Blue Water Navy Veterans. I served on the USS Bainbridge DLG(N)25 as a
Sonar Tech. I spent many years in the San Francisco Bay Area and worked as
a Senior Test Engineer before being retired in 2012. In 2013 I was
diagnosed with Prostate Cancer and in 2014 I was diagnosed with Thyroid
Cancer. To top that off this year I have been diagnosed with Heart Problem,
receiving a stent a few months ago. I have had many people ask me how I can
keep a positive outlook while having these problems. I tell them two
things, first I have Cancer, Cancer doesn’t have me and second. I am too
busy with working on the Blue Water Navy Agent Orange issue to worry about
it. I let my doctors do the worrying and I listen to them.
If you have any questions or any ideas that are going to help us please
feel free to ask.
Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Association
As you may have heard, I have stepped down to a position of Deputy Director and Mike Little is now the Executive Director of the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Association. Mike brings an amazing background of skills and experience to the organization and I expect things to flourish and grow. There will be some changes, beginning with a new Website which he and his Team are developing. It will have most of the same content, but in a format and presentation that should be more easily navigated.Mike is currently the Director of Legislative Affairs and Government Relations for the Association of the United States Navy (AUSN) and brings to the table over seven years' experience in Congressional advocacy work. He is also a Certified Veteran Service Officer who currently serves in the Naval Reserves as a second class Petty Officer. He works in Washington, DC and will be able to spend time with and have access to people and resources that I have not had access to since I live in Colorado.
I have no doubt that Mike's leadership will bring improvements to this Association in many ways, and I will be around as his second in command to continue my efforts in assisting veterans of all branches of service and to continue pushing for the resolution of the Blue Water Navy Vietnam veteran's problems. This is an extremely positive move for the Association and I think you will all be pleased with the results of this change.
Hopefully, a few of you will step forward to assist with work that needs to get done in making the Blue Water Navy Association even better than it now is. We are in a strong position as a growing organization to make a significant and meaningful difference in the lives of all veterans. Please continue showing your support with much needed donations to keep us solvent. I'm asking everyone to stick around and ride this new wave of opportunity as we achieve greater things in the very near future.
John Rossie, Deputy Director