Alexandria native earns coveted title of Navy Chief Petty Officer

Chief Petty Officer Joel C. Whiteside from his promotion ceremony (Photo Courtesy: U.S. Navy)
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MILLINGTON, Tenn. (Navy Office of Community Outreach) - Navy Chief Cryptologic Technician Joel C. Whiteside from Alexandria, Louisiana, was recently promoted to chief petty officer, an accomplishment that only one in five eligible sailors achieves each year.

Chief Whiteside is currently serving at Cryptologic Warfare Group Six.

“This promotion is the culmination of a lot of hard work, dedicated support from amazing family members and friends, and countless hard-working and patriotic sailors that made it possible,” said Whiteside. “It means the world to me, and I couldn’t be any more proud.”

Achieving the title of ‘Navy Chief’ is a major honor and milestone. According to Navy Personnel Command, there are only 8.5 percent of sailors currently serving at the chief petty officer rank.

To be selected for this promotion, sailors must be a petty officer 1st class, and successfully navigate through two qualifying factors: a job-based exam and a selection review board. A sailor’s record can only proceed to the review board after they score high enough on the exam. Once the exam is passed, their records are reviewed by a panel of senior navy leaders who meet for six weeks to determine if the individuals meet the standards for selection as a chief petty officer. A sailor’s performance is evaluated for at least five years, and each sailor attributes different experiences for their selection.

During the ceremony, the honored sailors invite friends and family members to pin on the two gold anchors that adorn the newly appointed chiefs’ uniforms, while the sailor’s sponsor places the combination cover on their heads.

“Thank you all from the bottom of my heart for the love, prayers, and support from everyone that has been there for me, and that either directly or indirectly make it possible for me to serve this country that I love,” said Whiteside.

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