JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Cryptologic Technician (Collection) (CTR) 1st Class Robert Nogales, a native of Temecula, California, currently serves as an instructor at Information Warfare Training Site (IWTS) Jacksonville.
Nogales enlisted in the Navy in September of 2000, and after completing basic training at Recruit Training Command Great Lakes, Illinois, he reported to his first duty station aboard USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) out of San Diego, California. There, he served as the work center supervisor over two divisions and leading signalman and quartermaster of the watch. His duties included ensuring his 14 crewmembers completed all assigned maintenance. While aboard, he qualified as an enlisted surface warfare and aviation warfare specialist.
Following his tour as a signalman and quartermaster, Nogales decided to execute a rate conversion to yeoman. As a yeoman he led Sailors ashore in Rota, Spain, and platoons of Sailors during two deployments to Afghanistan. He ensured his Sailors met and exceeded every qualification, and personally qualified as an enlisted Seabee combat warfare specialist. Additionally, he administered well over 1000 pieces of correspondence in an efficient, timely manner.
In 2010, Nogales was informed that the Navy would not allow him to reenlist due to the Perform to Serve Program parameters. As a career Sailor, Nogales was not prepared to leave the service he loved. With less than four months to separation, Nogales was handpicked by the CTR rating master chief to transfer to an undermanned rating. Upon graduation from CTR “A” school, Nogales chose orders to National Security Agency onboard Fort Meade, Maryland, where he quickly rose to the position of branch chief and leading petty officer. There he managed over 28 military and civilian personnel leading tactical missions to counter advisory intentions. Additionally, he was chosen to head the enlisted information warfare specialist board, where he helped qualify 336 Sailors.
During his subsequent tour aboard USS Porter (DDG 78), his ship’s signals exploitation team was the driving force for collection within the U.S. 6th Fleet area of responsibility. In three years aboard, he helped qualify 34 Sailors as enlisted surface warfare specialists and every Sailor under his leadership gained at least one paygrade.
Reporting as a naval instructor a year ago to IWTS Jacksonville, Nogales has established himself as the “go-to” senior petty officer and mentor for five fellow first class petty officers. He is the Advanced Cryptologic Afloat Training Course supervisor, responsible for all instructor and student requirements. He led three Sailors in the delivery of 440 hours of instruction to train 22 Sailors with a 100 percent graduation rate. As a motivated mentor, he has encouraged fellow instructors to qualify as master training specialists ahead of schedule.
"Although my career has encountered ups and downs, from which I have learned many lessons, I feel overly blessed to be serving in the greatest Navy, and to be part of the information warfare community,” shared Nogales. "I receive so much joy when I am able to help those Sailors around me; to help them paint that picture of success and motivate them to achieve their goals."
IWTC Virginia Beach currently offers 65 courses of instruction in information technology, cryptology, and intelligence with an instructor and support staff of 280 military, civilian, and contract members who train over 6,400 students every year at five training sites in the Hampton Roads area. It is one of four school houses for Center for Information Warfare Training and also oversees learning sites at Jacksonville and Mayport, Florida; Kings Bay, Georgia; and Groton, Connecticut to continue aligning Information Warfare Community training.
CIWT is recognized as NETC’s top learning for the past two years with four schoolhouse commands, two detachments, and training sites throughout the United States and Japan. Training over 21,000 students every year, CIWT delivers trained information warfare professionals to the Navy and joint services. CIWT also offers more than 200 courses for cryptologic technicians, intelligence specialists, information systems technicians, electronics technicians, and officers in the information warfare community.
For news from the Center for Information Warfare Training enterprise, visit www.navy.mil/local/cid/, www.netc.navy.mil/centers/ciwt/, www.facebook.com/NavyCIWT, or www.twitter.com/NavyCIWT.