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NLEC: Dedicated to Developing Leaders

21 December 2021

From Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Derien C. Luce, Naval Education and Training Command Public Affairs

The Naval Leadership and Ethics Center (NLEC) on Naval Station Newport is finding creative ways to develop their staff as facilitators of ethical leadership in today’s Navy.
NEWPORT, R.I. - The Naval Leadership and Ethics Center (NLEC) on Naval Station Newport is finding creative ways to develop their staff as facilitators of ethical leadership in today’s Navy.

NLEC’s faculty and staff design courses and create educational materials that emphasize ethical decision making at all levels of Navy leadership, with their interactive curriculum including thought-provoking case studies, one-on-one coaching, and other training exercises.

Dr. Olenda Johnson, professor of strategic leadership and leader development at the U.S. Naval War College, delivered a presentation on effective teaching and learning tactics to the staff of NLEC Dec. 16.

“I think NLEC is a central transition point for all levels of leadership,” said Johnson. “The way that you lead when you’re junior enlisted or junior officer is different than when you are a more senior enlisted or officer, and NLEC plays a significant role in helping make that transition and prepares them for the very difficult task of leading.”

Capt. Stephen Ilteris, NLEC’s commanding officer, commented on the importance of the continued development of his staff.

“Things are constantly changing,” said Ilteris. “There’s no way we can describe every situation or give a checklist on how to behave and act appropriately, but what we try to do, by instilling these ethical principles as they relate to Navy core values, is create a foundation to call upon with whatever challenge comes along.”

Each year, NLEC prepares the command triad - command master chiefs or chiefs of the boat, executive officers, and commanding officers - for leadership success.

According to Ilteris, in addition to preparing leaders for success, one of NLEC’s goals is to, “renew a sense of pride and purpose before they go into their next job as executive officer, commanding officer, or command master chief.”

Ilteris also added, “They will have the ability to call upon what they’ve learned here at NLEC to make the best ethical decision possible to get to the best outcomes possible for Sailors, commands, and the Navy.”

NLEC emphasizes operational excellence as the Navy's security environment becomes faster paced and more complex.

“Much of the conversation around both the Navy and DoD is how unpredictable and complex our national security environment is,” said Johnson. “If the environments in which we have to operate, lead, and win our wars in is consistently changing then we have to consistently grow as well, and we have to grow our leaders to be able to do that.”

NLEC supports leader development as an ongoing and continuous process that deepens, broadens, and differentiates future leader’s capabilities as they strive toward their maximum theoretical limits. For more information on NLEC visit or
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