Commanding Petty Despots: The American Navy in the New Republic

Commanding Petty Despots: The American Navy in the New Republic is a superbly researched volume by Dr. Thomas Sheppard, assistant professor of military history at the U.S. Marine Corps University Command and Staff College. Dr. Sheppard examines the early days of the American navy, focusing on the complex relationship between the first naval captains and the civilian leadership of the new republic.

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Into Enemy Waters: A World War II Story of the Demolition Divers Who Became the Navy SEALs

Andrew Dubbins wrote Into Enemy Waters: A World War II Story of the Demolition Divers Who Became the Navy SEALs so one of last surviving members of the UDT, 95-year-old George Morgan, can tell his version of the heroic stories from WWII. Dubbins introduces Draper Kauffman, an officer who joined the navy through an unusual route, established the UDT training pipeline, and led the UDT community throughout WWII.

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Developing the Naval Mind

The authors’ overall theme is understanding how naval professionals think and how they should learn. More than that, the authors operationalize each of these essays for military educators. Each selection includes discussion questions crafted by the authors, equipping a seminar leader both with reading material and a path to guide a dialogue in seminar. Readers can use it as a template to develop syllabi tailored to the educational objectives of their own organizations

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From CO to CEO: A Practical Guide for Transitioning from Military to Industry Leadership

Capt. Toti addresses the million-dollar question for service members–when is the right time to leave the military and start a civilian career? Using relatable examples from his navy career, he methodically guides the reader through common mistakes, attributes needed to succeed, and the defense contractor landscape most veterans transition into. He relates how private industry functions, the potential opportunities for veterans, resumes, targeting jobs, interviewing, and tricky subjects like defining one’s compensation. Capt. Toti is candid as he comments on poor practices, not sugar-coating his words as other civilian self-help books might do.

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West Point Admiral: Leadership Lessons from Four Decades of Military Service

West Point Admiral has something to offer everyone. At one level, it provides a tremendous insight into what it means to be a leader, to treat others with respect, and how to evaluate a new situation and make positive changes. Shelton focuses on the fundamentals of leadership, such as setting expectations up front, holding people accountable for their actions, while always taking care of them. 

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Saltwater Leadership Second Edition

In a slim, pocket-sized book authored by Rear admiral (RADM) Robert O. Wray Jr. USN (Ret), Vice admiral (VADM) John B. Mustin USN, RADM Theodore P. S. LeClair USN, and Commander (CDR) Andrew K. Ledford USN, PhD, Saltwater Leadership captures the collective wisdom of their 100-plus years of successful naval service concisely. It is based on their surveys of 380 other senior leaders and their review of thousands of pages of leadership books. True to the aim of the U.S. Naval Institute’s Blue & Gold Professional Library, the book is an inside job for naval leaders by naval leaders.

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The Debrief Series: HM1 John Housinga

Today, I have the privilege of speaking with the HM1 John Housinga, an Independent Duty Corpsman serving with 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines. He acts as the enlisted medical provider for over 1,000 marines and sailors. He is also a sought-after subject matter expert, incredible mentor, and a dependable leader. Housinga sheds light on the reality of being a leader in today’s military, how he has recovered personally from failures, and provides guidance to the future leaders of our armed services.

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The Morality Conflict Series: Crisp Morning

The high-pitched droning began somewhat slowly, but swiftly climbed in intensity as he stiffened his back and widened his stride. Maybe it’s the coal mine down the road ramping up their stripping operations, he quickly ponders to himself, but they’ve never made that kind of noise before. Instantly, hurtling like an angel falling from heaven, he could see the massive 757 passenger airliner come twisting from the sky and clipping the tree line. The whistling of the air passing over the shaking wings produced a gut-wrenching shriek, which made Ryan’s heart drop.

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The Morality Conflict Series: For What is Right

s. A loud bang echos through the room as one of our lead supervisors comes stomping into the lounge area. “So, are we making any progress? Or are you all as stupid as I assume you are?” The massive Italian man yelled as he strode past us, looking over our shoulders and inspecting us for any potential flaws that he could write us up for. “Well? Is no one gonna answer me? Ah I see, I guess it’s International Disrespect a Staff Non-Commissioned Officer Day. I wonder how we will celebrate. No suggestions? Sounds like an additional chapter of memorization due today.” He smiles mischievously, thinking that he has indeed taught us quite the lesson.

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Oath of Enlistment – It’s Your Oath!

You’ve taken the Oath of Enlistment to the Constitution, and perhaps administered it, too.

When’s the last time you read the U.S. Constitution or the Declaration of Independence, though? Your perspective on the meaning of those words changes over time. Revisit it now!

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A Brief Guide to Maritime Strategy

James R. Holmes opens his book, A Brief Guide to Maritime Strategy, writing, “This book is a tutorial for my younger self”. This notes the prior existence of a strategic gap in the naval education of his youth. Like most young naval professionals, training was in the technical and tactical aspects of his trade, but not in its strategic purpose. In this slim volume, Holmes explains a logical, readable, and useful primer on a maritime strategy that will close this gap for any newcomer to the field.

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