Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Senior Leaders Oral History Collection

Dates: 2012-2016

Interviews with senior Navy leaders discussing their careers, service, and/or end of tour. This is an ongoing interview series conducted by Navy Historians. We will update this page periodically as more oral histories are completed.

For more information on how to access these oral histories, please contact the Navy Archives.

Beldo, April D FMC
Position at time of Interview: Fleet Master Chief
Date of Interview: 23 March 2016
Interviewer: Regina Akers
Topics Discussed: Manpower; Personnel; Training Command; Bureau of Naval Personnel

Chamberlain, Todd YNC
Position at time of Interview: Chief, Naval History and Heritage Command
Date of Interview: 4-5 June 2012
Interviewer: Regina Akers & Tim Frank
Topics Discussed: Recruit Training Center; Orlando, Florida; Naval Air Technical Training Center; Tailhook; National Security Agency; Intelligence; September 11; Chief Petty Officer Association; Naval Support Activity Bahrain; VFA34; Individual Augmentee; Detainee Operations in Iraq; Camp Taji; Iraq; General Order One; Don’t ask, Don’t tell; Warrior Transition Program

Crawford, James W. III RADM
Position at time of Interview: Deputy, Judge Advocate General and Commander, Legal Services
Date of Interview: 6 December 2013 
Interviewer: Regina Akers & Tim Frank
Topics Discussed: Family; parents; life lessons; work ethic; faith and family; Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; “It takes a village”; UCLA basketball coach Jim Wooden; Captain Richard Philpot; JAG; USN; Retired; mentoring; promotion to flag rank; deployment to Afghanistan; force protection; out-check with chaplain; September 11 Attack on the Pentagon; Admiral Mike Mullen; VADM DeRenzi; duties as the Commander, Legal Services and the Deputy JAG; “Patton’s rule”; reorganizing JAG; diversity; military justice litigation qualified; a typical day; repeal of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy; ethical decision making; three guiding principles; courageous conversation; sexual assault; Admiral Jeremy “Mike” Boorda

DeRenzi, Nanette M. VADM
Position at time of Interview: Judge Advocate General
Date of Interview: 26 Apr 2013
Interviewer: Regina Akers & Tim Frank
Topics Discussed: Judge Advocate General; upbringing; strong family ties influenced her Navy career; decision to join the Navy; motivation for becoming a lawyer; mentors; James W. Crawford III, her deputy JAG; Admiral Jonathan Greenert, Chief of Naval Operations; Secretary of the Navy; diversity in the JAG corps; female flag wardroom; grounding of the Guardian; advising young lawyers; promotion to flag rank; a typical day; white space; JAG’s mission; impact of politics; budget challenges; cyber; recruitment; JAG think tank; Captain Dawn Tompkins; being responsive to the chain of command; lessons learned; advantages of being a JAG; reflecting on her career; the Navy family

Ferriero, David
Position at time of Interview: Archivist of the United States
Date of Interview: 26 June 2014
Interviewer: Tim Frank, Regina Akers, and Elizabeth McLaughlin
Topics Discussed: Navy career; Civilian career; Family

Fisher, James R.
Position at time of Interview: Director for Strategic Plans and Programming for Religious Ministries, CNIC
Date of Interview: 16 February, 9 March, 16 March & 2 Apr 2012
Interviewer: Regina Akers & Tim Frank
Topics Discussed: USS Surbachi (AE21); USS Caloosahatchee (AO98); Camp Pendleton; California; 1st Marine Division; 2nd Battalion; Fifth Marines; Al Jubail; “Morale” Officers; “Officers eat last”; “Chaplains of the Black Cross”; burning oil wells; Gulf War Syndrome; POW handling/treatment; Kuwait; Al Jubayl airfield; 2nd of the 7th; oil well destruction; Gulf War Syndrome; Yale University; Naval Air Station Sigonella; USS Essex; Coast Guard Headquarters duty; House of Representatives Invocation; Admiral James Loy; USCG; Senator Robert Byrd (D-WVa); NAVBASE Newport RI; Chaplain’s School Course of Instruction; Chief of Chaplain Louis Iasello; Operational Ministry Centers; Fleet Concentration Centers; Staff Commander Surface Force; Atlantic Fleet; Commander Security Transition Command-Afghanista; General Ahmad Naseeb; Afghan National Army; Ministry of Religious and Cultural Affairs; NAVBASE Newport RI; Chaplain’s School Course of Instruction; Chief of Chaplain Louis Iasello; Operational Ministry Centers; Fleet Concentration Centers; Staff Commander Surface Force; Atlantic Fleet; Commander Security Transition Command-Afghanistan; General Ahmad Naseeb; Afghan National Army; Ministry of Religious and Cultural Affairs

Hendrix, Henry J. "Jerry" CAPT
Position at time of Interview: Director of Naval History, Naval History and Heritage Command
Date of Interview: 18 Jun & 24 Jun 2014
Interviewer: Regina Akers & Tim Frank
Topics Discussed: Chief of Naval Operations Executive Panel, Harvard University; Kings College, Tactical Air Control Squadron Eleven, Air Tasking Order (ATO); USS Peliliu (LHA-5), Naval Postgraduate School, Samuel Eliot Morison Scholarship, Captain Edward L. Beach, USN,  USS Theodore Roosevelt  (CVN-71) VADM John Bird, USN, SECNAV Advisory Panel, Dalecarlia Reservoir, Building 46 warehouse; Andrew Marshall; Full-Time Equivalent; General Services Administration; Internal Communication System; Junior Officer; Naval Facilities Engineering Command; Office of Management and Budget; Office of the Chief of Naval Operations

Wray, Robert O. Jr. RADM
Position at time of Interview: President, Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV)
Date of Interview: 30 Sep 2013
Interviewer: Regina Akers & Tim Frank
Topics Discussed: Anti-Semitism at USNA; Budget; Comparing Rear Admiral Kenneth McKee’s leadership style to Rear Admiral William P. Lawrence’s; Diversity of experience; Interview with ADM Hyman G. Rickover; Inspection; Improving INSURV inspections; Leadership; Lieutenant Mike Mullen, a USNA company officer, later Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff; USS Mississippi (CGN 40) Fall 1980 and May 1981-1984; Navy Readiness Regional Reserve Command, Northeast Region; Training; Purpose, uniqueness and importance of INSURV; USNA Honor Committee Chairman; Value and role of the Naval Reserve

Published: Tue Jun 15 10:12:59 EDT 2021