Happy 44th Birthday to the Legalman Rating!

The following message was released by Judge Advocate General of the Navy Vice Adm. James W. Crawford, III, Deputy Judge Advocate General of the Navy Rear Adm. John G. Hannink, and […]

The following message was released by Judge Advocate General of the Navy Vice Adm. James W. Crawford, III, Deputy Judge Advocate General of the Navy Rear Adm. John G. Hannink, and Command Master Chief Jondell Ritchie.

Secretary of the Navy John Chafee approved the establishment of the Legalman rating on January 4th, 1972. By October of that year, there were 275 new Legalmen serving in the United States Navy. Today, approximately 620 active and reserve Legalmen provide critical services and support everyday at duty stations around the world, ashore and afloat.

Legalmen are essential to accomplishment of the JAG Corps’ dynamic and diverse mission. As Navy leadership challenges us to innovate and improve, our Legalmen are rapidly transforming into a community of highly-skilled paralegals who are educated and trained to perform demanding legal tasks efficiently and effectively in support of the JAG Corps. The JAG Corps’ role in military operations has expanded dramatically since the creation of the Legalman rating in 1972 and will continue to do so into the future. Our current mission has never been so vital to the success of the Navy. Legalmen will continue to lead the way and be fully engaged around the globe.

The Legalman community again saw significant accomplishments this past year. First, recognizing the unique skill sets our Legalmen possess, MCPON asked our community to provide senior enlisted nominations for the Navy Legislative Fellows Program, and for a second year in a row, a Chief Legalman was selected. Second, our enlisted manning is the healthiest we have seen in recent years and will continue to improve throughout the upcoming year. Third, since the Legalman Paralegal Education Program (LPEP) began in 2010, 74% of our Legalmen have earned degrees in Paralegal Studies. Fourth, a new Paralegal Litigation Support Course was offered to better prepare Legalmen to support the military justice mission as an integral member of a Trial or Defense team. The professional skills and education gained through LPEP and this new course enables our community to provide unparalleled legal service to the Fleet. Fifth, our Reserve Legalman

continued to answer the call by manning critical mobilization billets and, through its enhanced training program, provided highly qualified Legalman to all facets of the Fleet. Finally, our Legalmen continue to set the example and earn recognition as Sailor of the Year at sea, on shore, and with major Staff commands. Some have also earned national recognition from professional organizations, including the National Image Meritorious Service A ward and the League of United Latin American Citizens Excellence in Service Award. In this increasingly complex legal environment, our Legalmen have risen to every challenge and succeeded.

We wish the men and women of our Legalman community a very happy 44th birthday!

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