By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jesse Dick, Navy Office of Community Outreach Public Affairs
MILWAUKEE, Wis. (NNS) -- Americans in Wisconsin have a better understanding of the Navy and its role in preserving the nation's security and prosperity after one day of high-level engagements, Dec. 17.
Rear Adm. Michael Franken, chief of legislative affairs for the Navy, spent one day in Milwaukee meeting with government officials, civic groups, and reporters.
His itinerary included a meeting with Commissioner Rocky Marcoux, a luncheon and speaking engagement with the FUEL Milwaukee organization, an appearance on the ABC affiliate morning show, and print news interviews with the Journal Sentinel and Milwaukee Business Journal.
"The outreach activities offered a great opportunity to represent and speak about the Navy to the Milwaukee public," said Franken. "To be able to give everyone here an appreciation of how their sons and daughters are supporting the nation and its national security is vitally important."
Executive engagement visits are between senior Navy leaders and their government, civic, education and corporate counterparts and have become a focus of effort in recent years as the Navy works to increase understanding of the Navy's mission and role in America's national security strategy. The effort is particularly critical in areas of the country which do not enjoy a significant Navy presence.
Rear Adm. Franken visited Milwaukee as part of his trip to Marinette, Wis., for the christening of the USS Milwaukee (LCS 5) on Dec. 18.
"The visit also gave me the opportunity to discuss the Wisconsin-based Marinette Marine Corporation shipyard LCS construction program," Franken said. "Tomorrow brings us another milestone in that program by christening USS Milwaukee (LCS 5). The Wisconsin/Navy LCS program continues to bring enhanced capability to the Navy with its multi-platform flexibility and its speed and agility capability."
The LCS platforms enable the Navy to provide capable, cost-effective solutions to gain, sustain, and exploit littoral maritime supremacy.
"I certainly enjoyed engaging with the people of Milwaukee today. They are keenly interested in the Navy programs that directly impact their state economically and the Wisconsin Sailors currently serving around the world who are representing the United State as ambassadors," said Franken. "I'm so proud of having been a part of this organization for the past 33 years."
Marinette Marine Corporation shipyard and the Austal USA shipyard build different versions of the littoral combat ship.