Naval Reserve Force
On April 29, 205, President George W. Bush signed a "Memorandum for the Secretary of Defense", approving the redesignation of the United States Naval Reserve to the United States Navy Reserve. The process and authority to seek this change were afforded by the 2005 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
The mission of the U.S. Naval Reserve Force is to provide mission-capable units and individuals to the Navy, Marine Corps Team throughout the full range of operations from peace to war. In today's environment this new mandate takes on added meaning and responsibilities as the Naval Reserve Force is called on to play an increasingly active role in the day to day planning and operational requirements of the active Navy. The Naval Reserve represents 20% of the Navy's total assets and is a significant force multiplier the fleet must have to meet its growing global commitments.
Operations "Desert Shield" and "Desert Storm" (1990-91) gave dramatic evidence that the Naval Reserve Force is a thoroughly effective and vital part of the general operational capabilities of the Navy in an emergency scenario. Over 20,000 Naval Reservists were recalled for active duty running the gamut from medical personnel to fleet intelligence support. These "civilian" sailors responded and accomplished their jobs beyond all expectations.
The Naval Reserve Force consists of the Ready Reserve, the Standby Reserve and the Retired Reserve numbering over 690,000 men and women. The "Ready Reserve" is made up of "Selected Reserve" personnel and "Individual Ready Reserve" (IRR) personnel. The Selected Reserve, or SELRES, is the Navy's primary source of immediate mobilization manpower and represents those Reservists who are paid, either as weekend drillers, or who serve in fulltime support(TAR) on active duty status in the training and administration of the Naval Reserve Force program. Other reserve categories include the Standby Reserve and the Retired Reserve.
The Naval Reserve Force is commanded by a two-star Rear Admiral, Commander Naval Reserve Force, with headquarters in New Orleans, LA. The commander is supported by two flag officers who manage the Naval Surface Reserve Force,and the Naval Air Reserve Force, respectively. The Commander Naval Reserve Force also functions as the Director of Naval Reserve on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations in Washington, D.C., and as Chief of Naval Reserve in matters before Congress.
Following the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs Roles and Missions Study, the Naval Reserve has been restructured to support daily peacetime missions of the United States Navy, while still maintaining critical capabilities to mobilize and assist the Navy to fight and win wars. This restructuring has resulted in the Naval Reserve accepting new missions and hardware while supporting traditional mobilization and augmentation requirements.
The congressionally mandated Roles and Missions Study, titled The Future Naval Reserve, recommended 14 new responsibilities for the Naval Reserve. Further, recognizing the benefits and potential of this process, the Naval Reserve has implemented 14 additional initiatives to maximize support and further integration.
In the 2005 BRAC Recommendations, DoD recommended to close Naval Support Activity New Orleans, LA. As a result, it recommended to relocate the Navy Reserve Command to Naval Support Activity Norfolk, VA, except for the installation management function, which would consolidate with Navy Region Southwest at Naval Station San Diego, CA, Navy Region Northwest at Submarine Base Bangor, WA, and Navy Region Midwest at Naval Station Great Lakes, IL. The relocation of the Navy Reserve Command comprised of Navy Reserve Forces Command, Navy Reserve Forces, and Naval Reserve Air Forces, to Naval Support Activity Norfolk would enhance internal active and reserve component interoperability. By locating the reserve headquarters elements on the same base with Fleet Forces Command, its active component headquarters, this recommendation would significantly increase interaction between the two components, produce a reduction in force size by eliminating duplicative staff, and allow for further decreases in staffing size for common support functions. The consolidation of the Navy Reserve Command installation management functions with other Navy Regional organizations would be part of the Department of the Navy efforts to streamline regional management structure and to institute consistent business practices.
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