By Mass Communications Specialist 1st Class (SW) Kurt Riggs
The award recognizes sustained superior performance in an operational environment as a command and several significant achievements for excellence such as maritime warfare, engineering/survivability, command and control and logistics management. The command must then be nominated by their immediate superior in command.
"It's a significant achievement," said Capt. Charles Litchfield, Bonhomme Richard's executive officer. "The crew put in a lot of hard work in order to earn this honor and they should be recognized. This award validates what Bonhomme Richard sailors have known for a long time that this ship and her crew are top-notch in every regard."
Sixteen different areas are considered in the competition such as a ship's performance during training exercises, weapons inspections and tactical readiness. The evaluation in a year-long process and demands demonstrated excellence and superior achievement during certifications and qualifications throughout the year.
Commands earning the achievement may display a white "E" with a black shadow in a prominent position, as well as uniform ribbons noting the achievement.