By Jeffrey C. Doepp, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Mid-Atlantic, Public Affairs
NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC), Assistant Commander for Public Works R. David Curfman, P.E., was guest lecturer June 26, for the Emerging Leader Program (ELP), Session II, week-long classroom instruction, onboard Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia.
Curfman, a Senior Executive Service (SES) member since October 2014, began his federal career at Public Works Center Norfolk in 1981. He provided an approximately two-hour-long lecture to 30 students of NAVFAC Mid-Atlantic's 2018 ELP to discuss topics that included, Public Works, High Velocity Learning, and leadership.
Prior to the start of the lecture, Curfman more clearly defined the leadership portion of the presentation, saying that he and the class would be talking about values-based leadership, principle-centered leadership, and leadership from where you sit.
According to Linda Wilkinson, program manager for the Mid-Atlantic ELP and a human resources specialist in the Total Force Development Division of NAVFAC Atlantic, Curfman wanted to share with the cadre members his personal thoughts on leadership and the way forward for the NAVFAC organization. He is the first NAVFAC headquarters employee to address an ELP group.
"He encouraged the cadre members to decide what type of leader they wanted to be and discussed various NAVFAC initiatives in the future," Wilkinson said. "The students listened, asked questions, and were energized by his presentation."
One of those students is High Voltage Work Leader Lizabeth Walker from Public Works Department, Great Lakes, Illinois, who enjoys working with people and enrolled in ELP to learn the skills to better deal with others.
"Mr. Curfman's appearance here today shows how supportive he is of us NAVFAC employees," said Walker, an Illinois native who holds a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration and a Master's in Management. "My takeaway from his lecture is that we have the talent and resources to accomplish the mission, but we need to be prepared to adopt to future change. I look forward to being part of that change."
Another student, Kenneth Rogers, a management assistant in the Business Director's office of NAVFAC Mid-Atlantic, and retired Navy Yeoman, enrolled in the program to learn a more efficient way to lead in today's workforce and to improve and enhance his leadership knowledge.
"I was very impressed with Mr. Curfman and the presentation today," said Rogers, who hails from Dallas, Texas, and has been working for NAVFAC Mid-Atlantic for three years. "I liked it when he said 'you don't have to be in a leadership position to be a leader.' That really got me thinking."
Session III is the next classroom instruction and will run from Sep. 17-21, with a graduation ceremony on the final day of class.
ELP is a NAVFAC Mid-Atlantic Leadership Development Program designed to develop future leaders. Students complete valuable self-assessments, participate in experiential learning activities, and create a personalized leadership development plan. This six-month program focuses on developing the student's leadership skills through training and developmental experiences.
ELP began at NAVFAC Mid-Atlantic in 2010 and was designed to help motivated employees take the next step in their careers. In addition to three full-week sessions in the classroom, students perform various assignments on their own to complete the rest of the program.