Navy Talent Acquisition Group (NTAG) Philadelphia held a virtual change of command ceremony at the command’s headquarters located at Naval Support Activity Philadelphia, Jan. 5.
During the ceremony, Cmdr. Todd Winn relieved Cmdr. Kemi Elebute, who had served as NTAG Philadelphia’s executive officer since December 2017 and commanding officer since May 2019.
Unlike traditional change of command ceremonies held with all hands present, NTAG Philadelphia recruiters and Navy Recruiting Command leaders attended the ceremony virtually, following the COVID-19 regulations and subscribing to a teleworking directive preventative measures, including social distancing and travel restrictions. Capt. Katrina Hill, commodore of Navy Recruiting Region East, presided over the virtual ceremony.
Elebute thanked his Sailors and encouraged the team to continue to strive for excellence as the new commanding officer takes charge.
“I remain honored and humbled to be standing here today as your commanding officer, I couldn’t have asked for a better team,” said Elebute. “My tour here has been the highlight of my naval career. You are an exceptional group of professionals who continue to exceed expectations despite the challenges of recruiting with limited resources, recruiting in a COVID-19 environment, or just recruiting in the Philly AOR. So team, continue to impress with your ability to overcome challenges, help each other and work as a team towards command objectives. And as I turn over command to Cmdr. Todd Winn, I have no doubt you will continue to impress and do your part to man the fleet!”
During the ceremony, Elebute, whose following tour will be at Program Executive Officer Unmanned and Small Combatants, Washington DC, received the Meritorious Service Medal for his performance as commanding officer and was presented with a traditional parting gift and symbol of NTAG Philadelphia - a liberty bell.
Winn officially assumed the title of commanding officer after orders were read and salutes rendered. In his speech, Winn shared his command philosophy and views on the future of the command and its Sailors.
“Normally, new commanding officers are afforded a "shakedown" period to get to know their command and its personnel, but COVID adds additional challenges to make this happen, and our ceremony attests to that,” said Winn, addressing all hands on screen. “But as I learn more about you, my team, I wish to share something about me. I embrace teamwork, a strong sense of command pride, individual purpose within the command and mission completion, as to our communities, to our future Sailors, we are the window into the Navy. I am a member of NTAG Philadelphia first, and all other demographics second, and I promise to give you my very best as your commanding officer as I ask the same from each of you in return. We are one team, and your efforts are critical to our success.”
NTAG Philadelphia encompasses regions of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and West Virginia, providing recruiting services from more than 30 talent acquisition sites.
Navy Recruiting Command consists of a command headquarters, three Navy Recruiting Regions, 26 NTAGs and 64 Talent Acquisition Onboarding Centers (TAOCs) that serve more than 1,000 recruiting stations around the world. Their mission is to attract the highest quality candidates to assure the ongoing success of America’s Navy.