The recently re-established Okinawa chapter of the National Naval Officers' Association held a prayer breakfast at Camp Kinser's Surfside Club recently to recognize National African American History Month and reinforce the organization's diversity goals.OK, not just African-American, but other minorities? I think that is what the Chaplain (serving everyone on the Navy USMC team it sound like, ahem).
The NNOA is an organization that supports the naval services in the development of a diverse officer corps through recruitment, retention, and career enhancement, according to the NNOA mission statement.
Okinawa chapter members used the event to promote their goal of becoming a more diverse organization, according to Maj. Chester McMillon, president of the Okinawa chapter. The national chapter has struggled with a public misconception that the NNOA is a black-only organization.
Founded in 1972, NNOA's original mission statement pledged a commitment to the recruitment and retention of minority officers.
The organization brought together minority officers to mentor each other and provide professional development, but its mission statement was amended in 2003.
"A strong membership has to be a diverse membership, not just racially but also in rank as well," McMillon said
The organization seeks to gain more junior officers and midshipmen from the U.S. Naval Academy as well as senior officers interested in mentorship, McMillon said.
Navy Cmdr. Brenda BradleyDavila, member of the national and local NNOA chapters, was a key speaker at the breakfast.
"This chapter must not become a 'social group' like so many organizations," BradleyDavila said. "It must stay focused on playing a major role in the community."
Local chapter members plan to continue extending invitations to potential new members to participate in community events.
"The strength of our Corps is its diversity, and we're trying to bring out that diversity as much as we can," McMillon said.
Let's see - who would that leave out?
As for the reputation she is worried about, I'll let the picture, as the Diversity Bullies taught me, tell the story.
As a final note, the NNOA and other such affinity organizations are at their core sectarian, divisive, and yes, founded on a racialist theory in their core construct.
The fact we do that is a blight on our character and a shame on everyone involved. Of course, your opinion may differ, but I wonder if the good Chaplain has ever had anyone point out the other side of her sectarian advocacy?