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U.S. Fleet Forces Command (USFFC)

Trailblazing women in Savannah during Women’s History Month

18 March 2022
Yeoman 1st Class Jazzette Bailey, left, Ens. Amanda Clark and Logistics Specialist Seaman Ariel Watts, U.S. Navy Fleet Outreach Ambassadors, wave to spectators from the Underwater Construction Team One float during the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Savannah, Ga., March 14, 2022.
Yeoman 1st Class Jazzette Bailey, left, Ens. Amanda Clark and Logistics Specialist Seaman Ariel Watts, U.S. Navy Fleet Outreach Ambassadors, wave to spectators from the Underwater Construction Team One float during the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Savannah, Ga., March 14, 2022. The parade was one of many events and engagements the Ambassadors participated in during Savannah Navy Week. The Fleet Outreach Ambassador Team is a delegation of hand-selected Sailors who interact with the community by sharing their experiences and stories to help citizens better understand the Navy and its role in national security. Navy Week is an annual series of events held throughout the year in various U.S. cities without a significant Navy presence to provide an opportunity for citizens to interact with Sailors and learn about the Navy and its capabilities. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Zachary S Eshleman)
Yeoman 1st Class Jazzette Bailey, left, Ens. Amanda Clark and Logistics Specialist Seaman Ariel Watts, U.S. Navy Fleet Outreach Ambassadors, wave to spectators from the Underwater Construction Team One float during the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Savannah, Ga., March 14, 2022.
220317-N-VS214-178
Yeoman 1st Class Jazzette Bailey, left, Ens. Amanda Clark and Logistics Specialist Seaman Ariel Watts, U.S. Navy Fleet Outreach Ambassadors, wave to spectators from the Underwater Construction Team One float during the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Savannah, Ga., March 14, 2022. The parade was one of many events and engagements the Ambassadors participated in during Savannah Navy Week. The Fleet Outreach Ambassador Team is a delegation of hand-selected Sailors who interact with the community by sharing their experiences and stories to help citizens better understand the Navy and its role in national security. Navy Week is an annual series of events held throughout the year in various U.S. cities without a significant Navy presence to provide an opportunity for citizens to interact with Sailors and learn about the Navy and its capabilities. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Zachary S Eshleman)
Photo By: Brock Vergakis
VIRIN: 220317-N-VS214-178
A delegation of Navy Fleet Outreach Ambassadors arrived in Savannah this week representing a wide-range of Navy commands and communities to participate in Navy Week Savannah.

The Fleet Outreach Ambassador Team (FLOAT) for this Navy Week is comprised of an all-female team of Sailors who were hand-selected by their commanding officers to share their experiences and stories with the Savannah community.

“Each Navy Week, we send request nominees to serve as Ambassadors to represent just a few of the best Sailors from across our Fleet. When we pulsed our Fleet leaders, it was eye-watering to see that all of the nominees submitted for the Savannah program were women,” explained Capt. Sarah Self-Kyler, U.S. Fleet Forces Command Public Affairs Officer. “Women are, and continue to be a very influential and integral part of our Navy, and it’s wonderful to see them sharing their stories with their community and future generations.”

The FLOAT program provides an opportunity for the best Sailors to engage with their local community and share their experiences in the Navy. They are selected by their command basedon their performance, character and experience. Collectively, they form a diverse delegation that can connect with citizens of the Navy Week cities to educate them about who they are, and all about their Navy and its importance to protecting the nation.

The Savannah team included three Sailors from USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78): Yeoman First Class Jazzette Baily from Sparta, Ga.; Logistics Specialist Seaman Ariel Watts from Douglas, Ga.; and Mass Communications Specialist Second Class Angel Jaskuloski from Salt Lake City, Utah. Other Norfolk area Sailors on the team include Ens. Amanda Clark from Naval Computer and Telecommunications Area Master Station, Atlantic, from Las Vegas, Nev.; and Electrician’s Mate Madison Reiff who serves aboard USS Stout (DDG 55) from Grayson, Ga.

“It’s an honor to represent women in the military,” said Clark. “I think a common misconception is that the military is mostly men, so it’s nice to show them that women can be warfighters too.”

While women have served in the United States military since before America became a nation, they were not officially recognized as military members or veterans until 1948. Women were originally relegated to serving in the civilian fields of nursing, laundering, mending clothing and cooking. Today, women in the Navy may serve in all career fields. This female-led FLOAT is just a small demonstration that women in the U.S. Navy serve freely, proudly and equally alongside men in any military branch or role they desire.

During their mission, the FLOAT visited local high schools, participated in the Savannah St. Patrick’s Day Parade, engaged with local Girl Scouts Troops, met Mayor Van R. Johnson at city hall and assisted in area community service projects.

“I feel very privileged to get to represent the Navy and to be an ambassador during Women’s History Month,” said Logistics Specialist Seaman Ariel Watts. “It’s so important for women to feel empowered, and I’m so proud to get to be a part of this Navy Week, and to have a voice for women who didn’t have these opportunities.”

It is important to pause and reflect on how far the Navy has come and celebrate the bravery of female trailblazers that got us to this point. Women’s History Month reminds us of the inequality women had to face and that they must serve in a way that honors the legacy and improves the way of life for the continuous generations of female Sailors.

Navy Weeks are the service’s signature outreach program, designed to allow the citizens of Savannah and surrounding areas to learn about the Navy, its people, and its importance to national security and prosperity. The Navy Office of Community Outreach (NAVCO) coordinates numerous Navy Weeks across the nation every year.

The women to include past, present and future service members, serve with pride and continue to create an impeccable legacy that active duty service members continue through today.

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