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November 2, 2016
Dear Shipmates,
The Fall/Winter edition of the DASHPOT will not be published until the end of the year. We traditionally include the list of Minemen of the Year in that edition. This issue of the MINEMAN NEWS will include the three recipients of the award for Mineman of the Year.
Many folks have asked why we have both the DASHPOT and the MINEMAN NEWS. The Dashpot is published 2-4 times a year and the hard copy is mailed to all members. It features AOL-related news pertinent to AOM members. The MINEMAN NEWS is published periodically, one or more times each month, to inform AOM members and other interested parties of timely news, such as obituaries, items from the binnacle list, etc. It is only sent to those with e-mail capabilities so there may be some duplication in the DASHPOT. Between these two communications tools, every effort is being made to inform our members. An electronic copy is always available on the web page for the DASHPOT and the MINEMAN NEWS.

The officers of AOM have been seeking an editor/publisher for the DASHPOT due to the resignation of Don Healer. AOM wishes to thank Don for the nice job he has done over the past few years. He followed the fine tradition of DASHPOT editors who preceded him. Thanks, Don.
AOM has been extremely fortunate to have been able to attract the services of a new DASHPOT editor. Ron Swart, long-time member of AOM, has volunteered his time and talents to be our next editor. Ron has a reputation for performing superior work no matter what task he assumes. I'm sure that we can expect nothing less in this new job. Thanks, and welcome aboard, Ron! 

The designation and recognition of Mineman of the Year is an award described in the AOM By-laws, as follows:

"Maintain an annual award which will be called the "Mineman of the Year Award," in recognition of outstanding achievement and superior performance by an active and reserve duty enlisted Mineman rating person, to be judged and awarded by the Commander, Mine Warfare Command." [AOM By-laws-Article II, Section 6]
MINEMAN OF THE YEAR - Surface Warfare
MN1(SW) Adam R. Fleener, USN
Mineman First Class Fleener was born December 20, 1983 at Saint John's Hospital in Oxnard, California. At the time, his father, Adam Fleener, was finishing his Naval enlistment as a Hull Technician Second Class . Over the course of the next 18 years, he moved from Oxnard to Paso Robles CA.
He graduated from Paso Robles High School in 2002 where he excelled on the football field, earning all state accolades, as well as a member of the baseball team earning a full scholarship to California State University of Northridge. During his college career Petty Officer Fleener transferred schools to Trevecca Nazarene University in Nashville, TN where he finished his college baseball career and earned 125 college credits.
After returning home from Nashville, he began working in an oil field in San Ardo, CA. Starting out as a technician, he worked his way up to project management, where he managed over 30 trucks, with 98 personal working directly under his supervision. Petty Officer Fleener met his wife and the two of them moved to Sacramento, CA where he followed in his families footsteps and joined the NAVY, reporting to Great Lakes IL for boot camp in May 2012.
After graduating Basic Military Training, he was ordered to Mineman "A" school where he graduated at the top of his class with a 99% grade average. His stellar performance led to his automatic promotion to Petty Officer Third Class shortly after reporting to his first command, MCM Crew Fearless stationed in San Diego, CA. After completing AN/SLQ-48 operator and Mineman Boatswain mate "C" schools in 2013, he reported onboard the USS DEXTROUS, forward deployed in Bahrain. During his time with MCM Crew Fearless Petty Officer Fleener received a NAM, various unit citations, and was meritoriously advanced to Second Class Petty Officer under the Command Advancement Program.
MN1 Fleener is currently serving on board USS PIONEER (MCM-9) , forward deployed to Sasebo Japan. Proving to be a Sailor willing to take on any responsibility and challenge, he has overhauled the 3M program for ER09/OI01 as Work Center Supervisor, supervises 10 personnel in Combat Division as the LPO, manages 21 work centers as the Command 3MA and is a vital asset to the Combat Systems Training Team, Damage Control Training Team and Anti-Terrorism Training Team.
MN1 Fleener recently finished his Associates of Arts in General Studies from American Military University. His personal awards include the Navy Achievement Medal, Good Conduct Medal and various other service and campaign awards.

MN1(Shore) Donald L. Moore, USN
Mineman First Class, Moore was born October 12, 1987 in  Chicago, IL.  He graduated from Simeon Career Academy in May 2005.  Upon graduating from high school, he attended Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL for three years and joined the U.S. Navy, attending basic training in Great Lakes, IL in January 2009.  Following Basic Training he attended Apprenticeship Technical Training in Great Lakes, IL before moving on to Mineman "A" School in San Diego, CA.  His first duty assignment was with MCM Crew Reaper, home-ported at Naval Base San Diego, CA.  He served there from October 2009 to March 2014.
After his initial sea duty assignment, Petty Officer Moore transferred to Navy Munitions Command East Asia Division Unit Misawa in April 2014, where he currently serves in a Khaki capacity as the Mine Production Officer.  In addition to the fourteen Sailors under his charge, his responsibilities include the maintenance of all mines and assembly level equipment.

His academic achievements include an Associates of Arts from the University of Maryland College, Enlisted Professional Military Education, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Business and Administration from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL.

His personal awards include the Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal (three awards), Good Conduct Medal (two awards), Letter of Commendation form RTC, GW-Terrorism expeditionary and service medals, and the Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist Insignia.
He is married to the former Jami L. Nolberto of Chicago, Illinois.  Together they have two children, Donald Moore III (9) and James Moore (1).


MN1 Robert Cortez III, , USNR (MOMAU 1)
Mineman First Class Cortez was born in Oxnard, California on 20 April, 1987. His father, Robert, is a construction worker for the city of Simi Valley, CA and his mother, Ronnette, is an insurance agent. He attended Rio Mesa High School in Oxnard and graduated 2005 with overall G.P.A. of 3.6.   MN1 Cortez was involved in student government and was Sargent at Arms for the student body on his senior year. He ran varsity cross-country and varsity track throughout his high school career.

While going to college for sign language interpreting, he felt he want to do something more with his life and decided to join the U.S. Navy in 4 May 2006. He attended the Navy Training Center Command, Great Lakes, for Basic Training, and was assigned to division 242. He was assigned as education petty officer for his unit and ensured that his division passed all their navy knowledge tests. He went to Mineman "A" School in Ingleside, TX in November 2006 and graduated February 2007. After graduating from Mineman  "A" school, he went back to California and was discharged to become a reservist, drilling for NR MOMAU 1, Seal Beach, CA.  In 2010, MN1 Cortez participated in a deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, as an Individual Augmentee (IA), where he was assigned to detainee operations. While there he received an Army Accommodation medal for his service.
 After his deployment in 2010, MN1 got accepted into the Exotic Animal Training and Management Program at Moorpark College, CA. He graduated in May of 2013 with Associates Degree. To enhance his continuing education MN1 Cortez completed internships in the process of seeking out a career working with marine mammals, while fulfilling his commitment to the naval reserves.
In July of 2014, MN1 Cortez attended career counselor school. He continues to ensure that every member with career progression questions or issues is resolved in a timely manner, while training other MOMAU's from around the U.S. in quarterly builds. He continues to excel and flourish in all that he assignments and tasking's. Currently MN1 Cortez mentors 21 members from NR MOMAU 1. He is in charge of making sure all documentation is completed for multi-unit training evolutions, and commits to an extra three days minimum every quarter to ensure everything is prepared for other NR MOMAU unit training evolutions with NR MOMAU 1. In addition to ensuring proper preparation steps are taken, MN1 Cortez also acts as quality assurance/ safety officer (QA/SO) and instills his knowledge and experience into the training of visiting units.
MN1 Cortez's dedication to his role within NR MOMAU 1 was instrumental when he was the only quality assurance trained inspector during annual training in 2016.  During the Mine Readiness Command Inspection (MRCI), he served as the quality assurance inspector for the instillation of tail section as well as the programming and instillation of target detection devices for the MK62, 63 and 65 mine assembly.  His actions helped secure a 100% mine readiness evaluation on the MRCI inspection.
MN1 Cortez is successful in his civilian life, as well. He currently works for SAIC as a Marine Mammal Assistant Trainer II where he provides support to the Navy Marine Mammal Program. He also graduated in May of 2016 with Bachelor Degree in Psychology from Southern New Hampshire University.


Respectfully submitted,
Derick S. Hartshorn
Communications Coordinator