Pacific Warfighter Symposium participants gather for a group photo with Adm. Scott Swift, commander of U.S. Pacific Fleet, Aug. 14. (U.S. Navy/MC1 Phillip Pavlovich)

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii - Twenty-five commanding officers from throughout the U.S. Pacific Fleet convened Aug. 14-15 during the second annual Pacific Warfighter Symposium (PWS) held at U.S. Pacific Fleet headquarters.

Originally called the Far East Commanders' Conference, this by-commanders, for-commanders forum provides an opportunity to discuss how best to advance Indo-Asia-Pacific regional maritime security while broadening operational perspectives across aviation, surface, submarine, and SEAL leadership.

“The expansive Pacific theater and the dynamic growth of technologies makes this face-to-face gathering as important as ever,” said symposium director, Cmdr. Guy Snodgrass. “Other navies aren’t standing still and our combat unit leadership needs to understand winning battles in an increasingly competitive maritime environment demands our best.”

Top Fleet staff officers provided leaders with an enhanced understanding of the operating environment so their commands can more effectively plan, train, and execute operations. Attendees of the symposium were selected specifically to provide a breadth of community, location, and platform experience, as interactions across communities help to illuminate shared challenges and encourage tactics development.

“(PWS) charges me up to go back to my team and back to my squadron to share what I’ve learned. This symposium really helps translate strategy into tactics,” said Cmdr. Emily Bassett, commanding officer of the Pre-commissioning Unit Manchester (LCS 14). “I feel lucky to have been invited because not everyone who wanted to come could make it.”

U.S. Pacific Fleet is the world’s largest fleet command, encompassing 100 million square miles, nearly half the Earth’s surface, from Antarctica to the Arctic Circle and from the West Coast of the United States into the Indian Ocean. The U.S. Pacific Fleet consists of approximately 200 ships and submarines, nearly 1,100 aircraft, and more than 130,000 Sailors and civilians.