Military Sealift Command Public Affairs
For more information, contact:
Bill Cook (757) 433-2711
Sealift Logistics Command Atlantic
April 19, 2010
USNS Sacagawea, USNS Guadalupe and USNS Catawba
honored for excellent food service
Military Sealift Command presented its annual David M. Cook Food Service Excellence Awards to dry cargo/ammunition ship USNS Sacagawea, fleet replenishment oiler USNS Guadalupe and fleet ocean tug USNS Catawba at the International Food Service Executives Association's annual Joint Military Awards Ceremony April 17 in Reno, Nev.
The awards are presented in three categories: East Coast large ship (Sacagawea), West Coast large ship (Guadalupe) and overall small ship (Catawba).
Representing their ships at the ceremony were Supply Officer Kenton Gooden and Chief Steward Orlando Josafat - both repeat winners - from Guadalupe; Supply Officer Juan Negron and Chief Steward Clifford Liferidge from Sacagawea; and Steward Cook Robert Prades from Catawba.
"All of MSC's food service competitors provide outstanding cuisine and customer care, which made selecting a winner very, very difficult," said Roberta Jio, chief of MSC's food service policy and procedures and the person in charge of the awards.
Gooden, who won the award previously aboard fleet replenishment oiler USNS Yukon, is honored to be part of a winning team on another ship, this time Guadalupe. "As I walked around Guadalupe and saw the food service awards from previous years, I said to myself, 'One day my name will be among them,'" recalled Gooden. "What a dream come true to be part of another team to win this award."
Capt. Charles Rodriguez, Catawba's civil service master, is proud of the food service team aboard his ship, particularly the steward cook, Robert Prades. "Robert has been praised not only by Catawba's crew, but also by riders from the British Royal Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard," said Rodriguez. "To top it off, his leadership and administrative skills are top-notch."
Sacagawea's civil service master, Capt. George McCarthy, also has high praise for his food service personnel. "Supply Officer Juan Negron, Chief Steward Cliff Liferidge and their team have worked extraordinarily hard over the past year to win this award and I am very proud of them," said McCarthy.
"I knew Capt. David Cook. He was devoted and dedicated to the welfare of civil service mariners at sea and worked hard to improve the life of mariners in any way he could. It is quite fitting and well deserved that we have an award in his name," McCarthy concluded.
The award is named for the late Capt. David M. Cook. Cook was MSC's director of logistics from 1995 to 1998, and in that time launched a focused effort to improve all aspects of the food service operations aboard MSC ships.
Since 1992, Military Sealift Command has singled out several of its East and West Coast ships annually for excellence in their food service operations. For the last 12 years, honors for the winning ships have been part of the IFSEA program.
Contributing food service personnel aboard each winning ship will receive a performance award and a one-week shipboard culinary training session provided by a certified executive chef to further recognize each of the winning food service organizations for their contributions in providing quality meals and service.
MSC operates approximately 110 noncombatant, U.S. merchant mariner-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships at sea, conduct specialized missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces.
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