News, Events & More

In the News: ’96 Represents in Coronavirus-Related Roundup

Posted: 4/30/2020

As April draws to a close (along with week 6 of teleworking), I find myself reflecting on the great work our classmates are doing from sea to shining sea (and around the world). We, collectively, are no stranger to success; lately, however, I find myself gravitating toward positive, impactful, or motivating stories – and many of us are making those stories become headlines. Here’s a collection of recent publications or news appearances by ’96ers that I chanced to see over the last few weeks (and there are probably more that I missed). I wanted to share these with all of you –  while these stories represents a mere smattering of what we are doing around the world, the words (written and spoken) are resounding. Stay strong, ’96!

On the Air: Prohibition Distillery Pivots from Spirits to Sanitizer

Brian Facquet, Founder and Head Distiller at Prohibition Distillery in Roscoe, NY, recently spoke with Yahoo Finance about the company’s shift from making spirits to making hand sanitizer amid the coronavirus pandemic. Check out his interview here, which aired April 20th!

Check out Prohibition Distillery online to see their current catalog, which includes both small and large shipments. Whether you need 2 or 6 bottles, or a case of 25 – Brian’s got you covered! They even make 5-gallon buckets with pump dispensers.


Report: The Analysis and Policy Implications of the Crisis

Harrison Schramm, Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic & Budgetary Assessments (CSBA), was recently interviewed for an episode of Government Matters, which aired April 15th. During the interview, Harrison discussed his new report about coronavirus, the impact of the pandemic on policy and operations, and what we are learning from it. Watch live here!


Article: On Economic Resiliency, Self-Growth, Organization Culture, and Being Purpose Driven

Brian Grana, Consultant/Philanthropist/Veteran Advocate/Non-Profit Advisor/Venture Capitalist/Marine (whew!) recently published an article entitled “Redux: ‘That which you measure gets better*’ – Assessing My Value Propositions during the COVID-19 Pandemic,” which I discovered on LinkedIn. In this article, Brian shares some of his experiences and discusses his four Value Propositions.  Brian’s advice to us all: “Especially during challenging times… never miss a chance to make yourself better. I hope you find this article useful and please share with Veterans in transition!”  Thanks for your wisdom and continued patriotism, Brian.


YouTube: Keeping Sailors Informed During Challenging Times

Capt. Tim Kinsella’s initial COVID-19 address to NAS Pensacola (broadcast via Youtube and posted on Facebook and Twitter on 25 Mar – follow NAS Pensacola on either channel) appeared in my social media feed a few weeks ago, so I watched it. I started to think about how many classmates we have who are currently serving as COs – some ashore, some afloat, some domestic, some overseas. And I realized that they are truly being challenged in ways that I could not have possibly imagined when I was still active duty. BZ to all of you who are in command, leading the sailors who stand watch for this great nation.

Catch Tim’s op-ed, entitled “‘We are in a fight.’ But it’s one we will win,” published 10 April in the Pensacola News Journal. Sage words, and well worth the read, regardless of where you live.


Perspective: Focus on What Matters and Build Emotional Resilience

Dennis Volpe, a Leadership and Organizational Consultant, Veteran Mentor, and Strategic Advisor, is focused on developing others to perform at higher levels and improve their overall effectiveness. His recent article, published 27 April on LinkedIn, caught my eye with an opening Abraham Lincoln quote: “The best way to predict your future is to create it,” which is a favorite of mine. He explains what Emotional Intelligence is, discusses opportunities our current reality creates, and challenges us all to observe ourselves (and others), learn from our recent experiences, and use cognizance and clarity in building a new reality that emphasizes emotional resilience. One of the simplest, yet most thought-provoking and positive reflections I’ve read since the start of the pandemic. 

You can find one of Dennis’ earlier articles, entitled “Rugby, Resilience, and COVID-19: #WITH YOU” (04 April 2020), here.

On the Horizon: Football Season Tidbits and Reminders

Posted: 4/27/2020

Maybe it’s all the Tweets (and other social media posts) about Malcom Perry being drafted by Miami, and maybe it’s also being cooped up in my apartment missing all my peeps, but I’m ready for August – and some Navy football! So far, the season opener (Navy v. Notre Dame in Dublin) as well as the entire season are scheduled to occur as planned. In the spirit of optimism – and having something to look forward to – here are some football-related notes and reminders. Can’t wait to tailgate with many of you under the class tent this fall! Don’t forget Nagel is still collecting command coins for our bar top, so please reach out to him if you have one of yours to contribute. And bonus points to whoever comes up with a class tailgater facemask with a straw hole (or some other mechanism to drink through) – Brian Reardon, I’m looking at you!

  • SEASON TICKETS – – – Get ready for game day and get those home game tickets here!
  • PARKING – – – Don’t forget, if you purchase a parking pass and you’d like to secure a parking space next to our tent, please let Nagel know!
  • DONATIONS – – – The tailgate is self-funded, and operating costs are much higher than they used to be. Contact Nikki Battaglia if you’d like to make a donation toward the cause. You can use paypal to, Zelle to Nikki at (904)535-5810, or contact Nikki for other mechanisms. Your support is appreciated by many!
  • SWAG – – – The Midstore might be closed, but some of you have  likely seen the Go Navy sweat tees that a few of our classmates have ordered and posted about on Facebook. It’s not just another t-shirt… it’s a sweat-activated one! There’s a static N* on the front, but “Go Navy” shows up as you sweat. The more you sweat, the more you see – including a resounding BEAT ARMY on the back. They’re grey shirts that come in a men’s version, a women’s version, and a women’s tank. Order them here!

Related articles – – –

4/25/20 – Malcom Perry Highlight Reel from the 2019 season ( via YouTube)

4/25/20 – ‘Malcom Perry, the quarterback at Army’: ESPN host Trey Wingo gaffe draws strong reactions from Navy fans (Capital Gazette)

4/25/20 – Navy football standout Malcom Perry selected by Miami Dolphins in 7th round of NFL Draft (Capital Gazette)

4/25/20 – Malcom Perry Drafted in the Seventh Round by the Miami Dolphins (

4/23/20 – Malcom Perry and Keenan Reynolds to appear on WMAR-TV Draft Show (

4/22/20 – Ireland’s ban on large gatherings does not impact Navy-Notre Dame football game, Navy AD says (Capital Gazette)

From the President: Spring COCP Report and Class Updates

Posted: 4/26/2020
Email sent via Classmail 4/24/20

Greeting ’96 Classmates.

I’m writing today to summarize today’s Council of Class Presidents (COCP) meeting.  It was held on-line for the first time ever.  And if you can imagine what it might like to have ~80 people on a VTC with Presidents 70-80-90 years old…it was probably worse.  But also pretty comical at the same time.  We had briefs from various people to include the Commandant of Midshipman.


  • USNA opted to allow Midn to reside elsewhere.  That was in some part due to the 2 x suicides of Firsties at USAF Academy.  They were in some part attributed to their very strict isolation policies (they have since been relaxed).
  • Most events are postponed or cancelled.  Meetings, Commissioning Week, Dedications, Ceremonies, All Academy Challenge, etc…
  • They have NOT determined how I-Day or plebe summer will be run yet.  They are evaluating numerous options.
  • Midn are continuing their education via on-line methods.  They are also doing virtual clubs and physical fitness challenges.
  • They gave restrictees the option to stay at USNA to work off their time or postpone their time and stay somewhere else.  There are about 40-50 Midn currently in Bancroft Hall.  A handful of Midn have been ordered to return to USNA due to liberty incidents.  The group in Bancroft is basically the work detail to keep basic functions and maintenance going.
  • They have stepped up rodent / pest control while Bancroft and King Hall are virtually empty.
  • Many have asked why USNA is doing things differently than USMA and USAF Academies for graduation.  The Dant said “each Academy has their own set of facts, assumptions, and variables” and therefore they may or may not follow suit with other Service Academies.
  • They have NOT decided exactly how the virtual graduation will be held on 22 May.  They are capturing lessons learned from USAF graduation.
  • For now, the Navy / ND game is still on for Ireland but they are evaluating options.
  • They are still trying to figure out next year’s plebe appointments with potential candidates that have not taken the ACT / SAT.
  • The Class of 2020
    • Of course everyone wants to “help” the Class of 2020 with their graduation.  Based on USAFA graduation, they ask that classes not get out in front of USNA activities.  Apparently, there was a lot of confusion and stepping on each other. As a class we do not have anything planned.
    • They are also asking for any digital media (videos, pictures, memes, etc…).  If you want to tag any, use #usna2020.
    • Ultimately, the message from the Dant regarding graduation was to the effect of “it sucks but we are in the war fighting business and we are going to miss a lot of things in our career.  Get used to it.”
    • Orders to their first duty stations start getting cut next week.


The Mail Center and HAZMIN building / move has begun.  This is a predecessor to the new Center construction.

  • ~$22M building.  ECD July 2022.
  • Will have 2 event decks and can host a 240-person event.

They are still negotiating with Annapolis in parking and gate entryways.


They just hosted the first of the series online (Jacksonville) and was a success.

  • Washington DC SACC is still planned June 11-12
  • San Diego SACC is planned August 20-21
  • Dallas SACC is planned October 29-30


Most of the copper from the dome has been removed.  They have started making items for sale through a contracted company. (See  They will continue making items until the copper is gone.  We could do a group-buy of custom ’96 copper challenge coins with a price point $120-125 per coin.  If anyone thinks they can get a group buy together and would like to run that, let me know.


If you would like to register your alumni-owned business with the Naval Academy Alumni Association & Foundation, you can go to their new page located here They are making an effort to help others find and connect to alumni-owned businesses.


Don’t forgot to mark your calendars for our 25 Year Reunion 01-03 Oct 2021.  Expect everything to go “live” (Westin room blocks, registration, etc…) ~ Feb 2021.


Although times might be tough right now, don’t forget that you can still donate to the Class Gift.  If you are on a monthly auto-donation, you can always increase your value just a little…maybe an extra $5/month.


As of now, it is still planned. Let me know if you have season tickets and want your parking spot at our tailgate.

  • If you’d like to help out with the operating costs, feel free to contact Nikki Battaglia.  You can send her donations via Zelle (use her phone number (904) 535-5810).  We also accept paypal at usna1996tailgater@gmail.  Contact her for other methods of payment.
  • As a reminder, the tailgate is a completely separate account and self-funded through donations and we use no class funds to pay for anything.


With that, I’m signing off. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns and I’ll do my best to find an answer.

Nagel Sullivan


From the President: COVID-19 Update to the Class

Posted: 4/25/2020
Email sent via Classmail 4/20/2020

Greetings classmates,

I wanted to take a few minutes and reach out to all of you for 2 main reasons:

First, there is a Council of Class Presidents (COCP) coming up next week that I plan on attending. If there are any specific questions, comments, concerns, etc…that you would like me to address with the Alumni Association, please send me an email or give me a call to discuss. My plan is to take any notes of interesting information and share that with everyone.

Secondly, I wanted to check-in with everyone regarding the COVID-19 situation. I can’t pretend to know everyone’s situation but I imagine that some of us are impacted more significantly than others.  If you’re a small business owner or the business you work at is forced to close (restaurant, teacher, gym, etc…) then you could be faced with a dire situation.  Before you let it get to a point where stress is too much to handle, please reach out to someone…. anyone… classmates or not. And I can definitely say that there are there is help out there in various forms; even if it’s just someone to listen.

We have such a diverse group: active duty, retiring, reservists, new parents, kids graduating from USNA, business owners, teachers, contractors, you name it….I’m sure we have someone quietly in the shadows needing help but are afraid to ask.  I’m equally sure, someone is willing to help too.

I will put in a plug for ‘96+2 Objective Zero.  This was started due to their disturbingly high suicide rate in their class.  It can get you in touch with someone 24/7. Download their app too.  And if you feel so inclined, you can volunteer to be an Ambassador so someone might call you for help one day.

Thanks to the classmates that have been organizing various events over the last few weeks.  Whether they were serious or just drinking on Zoom, it helps break the monotony of the situation.

Feel free to contact me directly and I will do my best to help you out!

Nagel Sullivan

(301) 904-1526

ONR Global-Sponsored Technology Challenge Kicked off 23 April

Posted: 4/24/2020

Calling all global science & technology professionals!

ONR Global-X Challenge seeks to award grants of up to $750,000 to address the following three capability challenge statements: 1. Tailored Material and Manufacturing; 2. Multifunctional Maritime Films for Persistent and Survivable Platforms and Warfighters; and 3. Object Detection and Identification in any Medium. This Global-X Challenge provides an opportunity for international researchers to collaborate, generate revolutionary ideas, and demonstrate how these ideas will succeed.

I did not get this posted in time for yesterday’s kick off webinar, which was hosted by our own Matt Farr (XO, ONR Global) – but this is all just getting started. Details for the Global-X Challenge, including key upcoming dates, can be found in the Special Notice, posted on the ONR website and also at the website (Grant N00014-20-S-SN14). You can also contact Matt directly to learn more (email: – or find him via Facebook or LinkedIn.


Navy-Notre Dame Football Game Still Go For Launch… So Far

For those who have been planning (or contemplating) a trip across the pond for the Navy-Notre Dame football game, here’s the latest outlook from the AD. For reference, the game is scheduled to be held in Dublin on 29 August.

In the News: Brian Facquet Featured on CBS

Posted: 12/30/2019

New York’s local CBS news network recently aired a segment with Brian Facquet about crafting cocktails for the holiday season. BZ, Brian! You can check out the story and video here.

In the News: CAPT Lisa Sullivan Urges Industry Towards LVC

Posted: 12/17/2019

CAPT Lisa Sullivan, Program Manager of PMA-205, was recently interviewed for an article about revamping the Navy’s training-related technology infrastructure, specifically with an eye towards LVC (Live, Virtual, and Constructive). BZ Lisa! See the full article, published 06 Dec 2019 in National Defense magazine.

From the President: Annual Update and Fall COCP Notes

Posted: 12/16/2019
Email sent via Classmail 12/10/19

Greeting ’96 Classmates.

It’s time for an annual update.  In no particular order…


First, a moment to recognize our classmate (CAPT Tim Kinsella) for the incredible leadership during the horrible events this last week in Pensacola.  Let’s also remember ENS Joshua Watson, a recent USNA graduate that helped save peoples’ lives after being shot 5 times.  A true hero.


I attended the COCP on 6 Dec and captured some of the highlights:

From the Alumni Association (full brief):

  • They are looking to fill an open position for their V.P. of Finance.  If you have a CPA/MBA/accounting background and are interested, they would love to have you.
  • Ground breaking for the new Alumni building in ~1 year.
  • They will sell the old building that we know outside gate 3 (Ogle Hall).
  • Next week, they will begin dismantling the chapel dome.  90 years of neglect took a toll on the dome and it will be completely replaced.  Once replaced, it will be a bright copper for ~7 days, then for ~25 years, it will be brown until the patina chemical reaction occurs.
  • They will recover all of the copper and make a variety of keepsakes to sell.

From the Supe (full brief):

  • ADM Buck hasn’t made any drastic changes since CoC on 26 July 2019.
  • They have introduced numerous outdoor small-team leadership programs in austere environments to force people outside of their comfort zone (e.g., not just leadership in a company or sport team).  Similar to YP training but with a variety of options.
  • USNA Grounds are in bad shape.  The yard is underfunded.
  • Flooding is a huge issue.  Affects Hampton Roads and downtown Annapolis too.
  • Sleep deprivation is a big issue.
  • Addressed recent Satanic Cult rumors.  At no point has USNA ever (or will ever) allow a Satanic Cult to worship as an official club/activity.  If they choose to meet on their own time, they have the freedom to assemble.
  • King Hall is in bad shape.  There are issues with quality and quantity.
  • 96% of Firsties got their 1st or 2nd Choice at Service Assignment night.  2020 is a very small class so there are minimal people that selected Restricted Line.


30 Year Class Gift.  We are currently just over $200k pledged/donated toward our class gift (with 190 classmates participating.  About 30/190 is on recurring monthly pledges).

Help up improve midshipman development and the Yard: Consider pledging ~$1 a day.  You can set up the $30/month to be charged straight to your credit card.

Side Note: You could be on recurring pledges but they *may* not be going to the CLASS GIFT (so ’96 gets credit for your donation but it isn’t going towards our $600k goal).  The only way to know is by calling USNA or contacting Brian Reardon at

Give here and make sure you choose “other donation options” then “support my class project” then select “pledge”.  Or call 410-295-4115 to donate.


If you are in Philly for the game, we will have a no-host social at Tir na Nog Saturday morning about 10:00.  Show up and order what you want.  If you prefer tailgating at the stadium, Johnny Harnett will be there in the parking lot.  Contact him for details (


Don’t forget to plan for the trip to Ireland to watch Navy/Notre Dame 29 Aug 2020.  People are planning to meet up with friends and classmates.  Last time was a blast!


A message from Shane Macdonald to remember to update your profiles with the Alumni Association.  We spent time collecting a lot of updated details on people, however, USNA has now changed their policy and we can no longer make changes for people.  You are responsible for yourself now.


As a reminder, for those that don’t have Facebook (or can’t stand going on it any more), Cara Albright maintains our class web page that repeats much of the same information from our class Facebook page.


As a wave of or classmates approach their retirement, don’t forget to reach out to your class for questions, recommendations, help, etc.  Other resources include:

  • Jenn Campbell runs The New ’96 Hour. An opportunity to hear about various topics monthly. UPCOMING EVENTS: Rhoan Boucher is booked 24 Jan 2020 spot, TBD on the 21 Feb 2020 spot.
  • Our LinkedIn page
  • Service Academy Career Conference (SACC)
  • Benefit Finder


The class of ’96+2 is still pushing suicide awareness very hard after their string of incidents. Please consider downloading the app OBJECTIVE ZERO and becoming an ambassador today.  You just need to be ready to answer the phone if someone needs you.


The class of ’96-7 has organized a group Bremont USNA watch-buy.  Cost is $3k (retails for $6k).  Details here.


There were questions about why some teams sing their alma mater after home & away games and others don’t.  The Academy coordinates with each team a couple of months before the game and asks if they would like to sing their alma mater after the game.  Some schools agree and some don’t care.  It is up to the individual school.


USNA is looking for more people to be B&G officers.  We have several in our class so if you have questions about what it entails and job satisfaction, please reach out to Sharon (Eliassen) Barbins.


Most of our large muscle movements are done and we eagerly await our 25th Reunion.  It is scheduled for 1-3 Oct, 2021 (USAF Game) and our home base hotel will be the Westin.  We are working on some alternatives for other hotel blocks to give people options.  Put it on your calendars now and start saving!


Cruise Planners has put together a cruise trip that will provide a great opportunity to share in our 25th and ’96-5’s 30th anniversary of being commissioned. The 25th anniversary commissioning cruise that we have put together is a 9-night Norwegian Cruise Line cruise aboard the Norwegian Escape from May 28th, 2021 through June 6th, 2021 (second option is July 3rd –  12th, 2021). The cruise sails from Copenhagen, Denmark and sails to Warnemunde (Berlin), Germany; Tallin, Estonia; Overnights in St Petersburg, Russian Federation; Helsinki, Finland; and Nynashamn (Stockholm), Sweden before returning to Copenhagen. The current pricing has a 30% discount promotion running through December 16th, 2019. There may be other sales, and while our group pricing is better than “regular” prices, this promotional pricing should be the lowest we can get. Deposits are only $50 per person and refundable, so if you are interested, please contact Dan so he can give you more information as well as reserve a cabin for you. He can be reached at: 844-GoNavy-1 (844-466-2891); via email at (price is ~$5k/couple)

Dan will be on this cruise with members of his class on the May/June cruise as well and he looks forward to sailing with you for your 25th anniversary of commissioning.


With that, I sign off.  Please feel to reach out with any questions or comments.

Nagel Sullivan


Navy Football is Bowl Bound!

Armed with a slew of Top 25 rankings, a decisive routing of Army, and a 10-2 record, we are headed to the Liberty Bowl in Memphis, TN, for the first time since 1981! Bowl game and ticket information (to purchase or donate tickets) is available here, or call 1-800-US4-NAVY during business hours. GO NAVY!

12/31 – Liberty Bowl v. Kansas State (@ 1545)

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