CMDCM RACHEL COSTELLO
Command Master Chief
Master Chief Costello was born in Kobe, Japan, and raised in Long Beach, California. She enlisted in the Navy in 1984, and was assigned to U.S. Naval Facility Argentina, Newfoundland as an undesignated seaman. Her next assignment returned her to California at Naval Air Station, Miramar, where she was designated as a Navy Yeoman.
Master Chief Costello entered the Flag Officer Writer Community in 1989 after completing a 16-week training course at Naval Technical Training Center, Meridian, MS. Her first Flag writer assignment was with Commander, Fleet Air, Western Pacific in Atsugi, Japan, with Rear Admiral James "Red" Best and Rear Admiral Steve Briggs. As a native Japanese speaker, Master chief Costello was heavily involved with the socialization of the Night Landing Practice Program with the Japanese civilian community, and worked closely with the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force and U.S. SEVENTH Fleet, accompanying Vice Admiral Stan Arthur, C7F, as his personal interpreter.
She next transitioned to the Surface Warfare Community as Flag Writer for Commander, Amphibious Forces, U.S. SEVENTH Fleet (CTF-76)/Commander, Amphibious Group ONE in White Beach, Okinawa, with Rear Admiral John F. Sigler. She accompanied RADM Sigler upon his transfer to U. S. Pacific Fleet as Assistant Chief of Staff, N3/N5/N6. In 1995, she was selected to fill a gapped "hot-fill" Flag Writer billet at Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet for Vice Admiral David. B. Robinson, and continued to write for Vice Admiral Al Krekich. Upon VADM Krekich's retirement, Master Chief Costello was assigned to U. S. Naval War College to Rear Admiral Peter A.C. Long to standup a new Office of the Provost, the first time the office was led by a senior military officer since the College was founded.
She was again selected to another "hot-fill" billet as Flag Writer to the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, where she worked for MCPON Jim Herdt and MCPON Terry Scott. During her assignment, she played a key role in transitioning MCPON's Office from administrative umbrella of Chief of Naval Personnel to the Chief of Naval Operations and positioning the MCPON to play a greater role as the primary advocate for Sailors and their families. During her assignment with MCPON Scott, she was hand-selected to join the Personal Staff of Chief of Naval Operations as the Protocol Flag Writer for Admiral Vern Clark. During her assignment with CNO, Master Chief was responsible for reorganization of the protocol office, overseeing a complete audit of over 5,000 line items in the Gift Locker worth $300,000, and execution of the first CNO Change of Command in 5 years. While working for Admiral Mike Mullen, she was selected to relieve the Yeoman "C" School (Flag Writer School) Course Supervisor. In Meridian, Master Chief Costello oversaw the first Flag Writer Course curriculum review in five years, and infused a scenario-based training based on feedback from the Flag Officer Community.
Master Chief Costello was selected for the Command Master Chief Program in 2009, and immediately reported to Forward-Deployed Naval Forces as Command Master Chief of USS MUSTIN (DDG 89), and AEGIS missile guided, Flight IIA destroyer homeported in Yokosuka, Japan. During her CMC tour, MUSTIN was COMNAVSURFOR Cattle Effectiveness Award, multiple COMPACFLT Retention Excellence "Golden Anchor" Award, and humanitarian Service Medal as part of RONALD REAGAN Strike Group responding to the Northern Japan earthquake. MUSTIN was Destroyer Squadron FIFTEEN's nomination for the "Bloodhound" Award for ASW Excellence and was chosen as the lead warship for the U.S. SEVENTH Fleet's Electronic Warfare Syndicate. Master Chief Costello was Destroyer Squadron FIFTEEN's nomination for Master Chief Anna Der Vartanina Leadership Award for 2011 and 2012.
In May 2012, Master Chief Costello returned to the aviation community as Command Master Chief of Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron ELEVEN, the Dragonslayers. She led the last deployment of the Dragonslayers aboard the USS ENTERPRISE (CVN 65) on her final deployment prior to deactivation in December 2012. During her current CMC tour, the Dragonslayers won COMNAVAIRFOR Battle Effectiveness Award and the Golden Wrench Award.
Master Chief Costello is qualified to wear both Enlisted Surface Warfare and Enlisted Aviation Warfare Specialist devices. She is a certified U.S. Navy Master Training Specialist, and is a graduate of U.S. Navy Senior Enlisted Academy, Command Master Chief/Chief of the Boat Course, and University of North Carolina Advanced Management Program ("EBC Light")