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News | April 21, 2016

King’s ship sets sail after more than 30 years in the Navy

By Michael L. Jones DLA Land and Maritime Public Affairs

Serving in America’s military forces often requires conquering many challenging situations, some demanding tremendous courage. But for those who answer the call – the experience can be life changing. For warfighters who make service a lifelong commitment, the end of their careers is often bittersweet; which was the sentiment expressed April 21, 2016 by the outgoing Land and Maritime Commander Navy Rear Admiral John King.

After more than 30 years serving as a naval officer, King officially retired and is transitioning to the next chapter in his life. “It’s just been unbelievable how fast my time here at Land and Maritime has flown by and I have to tell you I’ve been extremely fortunate to work with such an inspired group of professionals,” said King.

Since assuming command of Land and Maritime in August of 2014 King led the workforce through some notable challenges. He directed improvement efforts impacting both operational efficiencies and workforce quality of life enhancements. 

Launching DLA’s DNA marking capability to help deter microcircuit counterfeiters, increasing security enhancements by bringing the Defense Supply Center Columbus’ new security gate on line and establishing a Land and Maritime People and Culture Directorate; these were just a few examples of King’s impact during his tenure as commander.

And while addressing Land and Maritime’s operational needs he also prioritized sustaining and strengthening industry partnerships through collaborative communication, which he explained as a key component to operational success. 

"We've been blessed with tremendous commanders, but none brought the range and depth in logistics that RDML King has.....he's truly the consummate logistician and definitely raised our game!" said Land and Maritime Deputy Director James McClaugherty.

King shared how fulfilling it’s been to experience the dedication, patriotism and workforce enthusiasm at Land and Maritime and the DSCC.  He added that even though Land and Maritime’s mission is worldwide, the true essence of its team comes from its roots here in the great state of Ohio.  

“The love for our country in the heartland is without equal and has made for an extremely satisfying command experience as I not only interacted throughout the building, but within our community of Whitehall and greater Columbus area,” King said.  “Thank you all for the unselfish support you provided and the repeated opportunities you created for me to brag to anyone who’d listen about how exceptional you are at what you do and what a wonderful community we have here in central Ohio.

“From the day I joined the Land and Maritime team in August 2014 I’ve been impressed with the professionalism and cooperation I’ve experienced as your commander,” said King.  “You’ve become a part of my family as I hope I’ve become somewhat a permanent part of yours. You’re quite simply the best in both DLA and DOD, and I say that without any doubt. 

“Leaving such a great organization is difficult for me, but I know that your dedication will keep you pushing forward to keep our warfighters armed and ready. Take care Land and Maritime and the entire Defense Supply Center Columbus team, it’s been my honor to serve as your commander!”

King is expected to make his home in Philadelphia. McClaugherty will assume the role of acting commander until Navy Rear Adm. Michelle C. Skubic takes command of Land and Maritime later this year.