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Training Support Center Great Lakes
Captain Mark A. Meskimen
Commanding Officer,
Training Support Center, Great Lakes

Commanding Officer

Capt. Mark A. Meskimen, a native of Ely, Iowa, enlisted in the Navy in 1982. Following Recruit Training he attended Electronics Technician “A” School Great Lakes.

His enlisted tours included USS Vandegrift (FFG 48); Naval Computer and Telecommunications Area Master Station (NCTAMS) Eastern Pacific in Wahiawa, Hawaii; and USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53).

In June 1993 Capt. Meskimen was commissioned in the Limited Duty Officer Program (Surface Electronics). He then reported to USS Russell (DDG 59) as the Pre-Commissioning Electronics Material Officer, completing successful combat operations during Operation Desert Strike.

He also served as: Combat Systems Maintenance Officer, USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72); Current Operations Officer and Atlantic Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System (SURTASS) Force Protection Officer in the wake of 9/11, Joint Maritime Facility, St. Mawgan, England; and Combat Systems Officer, Force Protection Officer, Integrated Training Team Leader and 3M Officer, USS Essex (LHD 2). During this tour the USS Essex led efforts in humanitarian operations for the devastation from the deadliest tsunami ever recorded in Indonesia.

Capt. Meskimen next served as Head Combat Systems Ratings Detailer in Millington, Tenn., responsible for detailing more than 33,000 enlisted Sailors, balancing fleet needs with Sailor desires.

In June 2010 he assumed command of Center for Surface Combat Systems Unit Great Lakes, Ill. where he was responsible for the training and Sailorization of more than 14,000 students annually.

He then reported to the USS Carl Vinson as the Combat Systems Officer. While onboard he attained all Green “CS” requirements, completed a workup cycle and CYBER inspection. Upon completion, he was assigned as the Waterfront Operations Deputy, CVN 70 and CVN 71 Project Lead at SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific overseeing all installations.

On 10 November 2016, Capt. Meskimen assumed command of Training Support Center Great Lakes.

He graduated from Park University (cum laude) with a Bachelor of Science in Management and a Master’s Degree from Webster University in Leadership and Management.

Capt. Meskimen’s personal awards include the Meritorious Service Medal (5th), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (3rd), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (2nd) and various unit and campaign awards.

Commander Kevin M. Halfacre
Executive Officer,
Training Support Center, Great Lakes

Executive Officer

Cmdr. Kevin Halfacre is a native of Gainesville, Fla. He enlisted in the Navy in September 1996. In 1997 he was selected for a commissioning program through the Two-Year Navy Reserve Officer’s Training Corps Scholarship Program where he received his commission and Bachelor of Science degree in Geography from Jacksonville University in 1999.

Upon completion of Surface Warfare Officer School in 2000, he reported to USS Tarawa (LHA 1) as the Repair Division Officer where he assisted with damage control efforts during Operation Determined Response and the recovery efforts of the USS Cole (DDG 67). In 2002, Cmdr. Halfacre transferred to USS Klakring (FFG 42) serving as the Combat Systems Officer deploying to the eastern Pacific Ocean in support of counter-drug operations.

Cmdr. Halfacre transferred to the Navy’s Human Resources Community in 2003 and reported to Military Entrance Processing Station Louisville, Ky., as the Operations Officer. In 2005 he was selected to attend the Naval Postgraduate School where he received his Masters of Science degree in Management and completed the Manpower Systems Analysis program. In 2007 he reported as the Officer Programs Officer at Navy Recruiting District New Orleans, La. Upon completion of his assignment in 2010, he served as the Strength Manager at Headquarters United States Central Command in MacDill, Fla.

In 2012 he reported as the Training Officer aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) deploying to the western Pacific Ocean in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. In March 2014 he transferred to Navy Recruiting Command and assumed the duties as Director, General Officer Accessions.

Cmdr. Kevin Halfacre assumed the duties as Executive Officer for Training Support Center, Great Lakes, Ill., on June 8, 2016.

His decorations include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (three awards), Joint Service Achievement Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (three awards), and various unit awards. He was the recipient of the 2001 Navy-Marine Association Leadership Award.


Mr. Michael C. Bilak
Executive Director and
Training Support Director (N7)
Training Support Center, Great Lakes

Executive Director

Mr. Michael C. Bilak is the Executive Director and Director of Training Support (N7) the Training Support Center Great Lakes. Mr. Bilak is responsible for providing continuous high-level command advice and technical assistance to the Commanding Officer; administers policies; and exercises independent and innovative management control to ensure execution of the Center's mission including supervising day to day operations. This position is also the Site Functional Liaison for Training Management Site Great Lakes. The Training Management Site, Great Lakes provides curriculum, evaluation, and educational tools, as well as, developing technical training solutions and professional development continuums for domain training sites.

Mr. Bilak served in the Navy from 1976-2005. Upon completion of Recruit Training at RTC Great Lakes, he completed Hospital Corpsman "A" and served as a Basic Laboratory Technician at the National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, MD. He completed "C" training and became one of 32 trained Cytotechnologists in the Navy. As a Chief Hospital Corpsman, he was the academic school head for three Medical Department "C" schools. In 1988, Mr. Bilak was commissioned as an Ensign in the Medical Service Corps. As a Medical Service Corps officer, he has served as Head, Manpower Management and Head, Management Information Department, National Naval Dental Center; Director of Academic Services, Naval School of Dental Assisting and Technology; Head, Resource Management, Naval Hospital Corps School; and Director for Administration/Head Resource Management, Naval Institute for Dental and Biomedical Research. Mr. Bilak retired as a Lieutenant Commander in 2005 and entered civil service as the Head, Resource Management, Naval Institute for Dental and Biomedical Research where he served as the principal advisor to senior management and researchers on all resource management issues and had direct supervisory responsibility for all finance, budget, human resources, procurement, IM/IT, and administrative operations for the command.

Mr. Bilak has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Health Care Management from Southern Illinois University and a Master of Arts degree in Education from San Diego State University. Additionally, he completed the United States Naval War College Command and Staff College seminar program in 2000.

CMDCM (SS) Randy Reid
Command Master Chief
Training Support Center, Great Lakes

Command Master Chief

Master Chief Reid, born in Oscoda, Mich., graduating from Quitman High School, Ark. , in 1991. Reid enlisted in the Navy in April 1992 and completed Basic Recruit Training at Recruit Training Command (RTC), Orlando, Fla., followed by Surface Quartermaster "A" School in Orlando. He then attended Basic Enlisted Submarine School in Groton, Conn.

His first assignment was USS Archerfish (SSN 678) in December 1992. While assigned to Archerfish, Reid completed three six-month deployments and conducted a crew combination and change of homeport to Bremerton, Wash., for decommissioning.

In December 1998, he reported to Naval Submarine School in Groton as a navigation instructor. From January to October 2001, he was assigned to Naval Submarine School as a student for Navigation Maintenance "C" School; following his graduation from "C" School, he reported to USS Providence (SSN 719). From October 2001 to January 2004, Reid was assigned as the navigation leading petty officer (LPO). He completed a six-month deployment in direct support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and was advanced to the rank of Chief Petty Officer in September 2003.

In January 2004, he reported to USS Annapolis (SSN 760) as assistant navigator. During this tour, Annapolis completed a change of homeport and a 13-month Depot Modernization Period (DMP). Following DMP, the ship completed a Mediterranean deployment in support of the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT).

In April 2006, Reid transferred to the Submarine Learning Center in Groton as the Navigation Rating Lead. While there, he developed the Voyage Management System (VMS) Certifier Course, which led to successful Electronic Chart Display Information System (ECDIS) certifications of 27 submarines. He was advanced to the rank of Senior Chief Petty Officer in 2006.

He reported to USS Missouri (SSN 780) in July 2008 as the assistant navigator where he successfully completed a shortened build cycle and the associated trials and testing. Reid was advanced to Master Chief Petty Officer in 2010, and reported to PCU Minnesota (SSN 783) as Chief of the Boat in January 2011. In March 2014 he returned to Naval Submarine School as the Basic Enlisted Submarine Training Department Director and served as Command Master Chief for Naval Submarine School.

In January 2017, Reid transferred to Training Support Center Great Lakes and is serving as Command Master Chief.

His decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal (2 Awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (2 Awards), Good Conduct Medal (4 Awards), and various unit and campaign awards.