Service Member Spotlight: Derrick Valentine
We Are MSC: Hard Work, Mentorship Drives USNS Newport JSO Success
Derrick Valentine advanced from entry-level Steward Utility (SU) to Junior Supply Officer (JSO) aboard the Expeditionary Fast Transport vessel USNS Newport (T-EPF 12).
“I was starting a tour USNS Wally Schirra and the Supply Officer, Rosalyn Pridgeon, came to me my second day onboard and said ‘you’re going to be my JSO’,” he said. “She named me cargo JSO for about six weeks. When the announcement for JSO was coming up, she told me to write my package and she was going to review it. At the time, I wasn’t trying to be a JSO, honestly. I was comfortable where I was. So I didn’t do it. About three days before closing she asked for my package and I didn’t have anything. She closed the door and snapped on me!”
“She told me I was wasting my time and that I was supposed to be moving up. After that talk, I wrote my package in two days. I didn’t get best qualified that time but I got qualified. Her lighting that fire made me keep pushing until I got best qualified.”
Valentine says being JSO aboard Newport has been one of the many highlights of his career. He makes sure the 26-member crew has everything they need to accomplish their mission. From repair parts and supplies to consumables that make the comfort of living onboard better. He is a catalyst for keeping Newport going.
“Derrick encapsulates everything amazing about this organization,” said Newport Master, Capt. Victor Martino. “Demonstrating hard work and dedication can and will take you anywhere. He has been in the MSC for a number of years and is one of the hardest working individuals I know.”