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RLSO Southeast hosts 2024 Southeast JAG Corps Training Symposium

May 8th, 2024

More than 70 Navy staff judge advocates, legalmen, and civilian legal professionals gathered at Naval Air Station Pensacola, April 23 to 25, for the 2024 Southeast JAG Corps Training Symposium. Attendees represented all 13 Region Legal Service Office Southeast (RLSO Southeast) locations, as well as the Victims’ Legal Counsel Program, Defense Service Office, and independent commands and offices across the southeast region.

The symposium, a culmination of months of dedicated planning, was themed, Our Mission, Your Story, One Team. Over the course of the symposium, speakers and participants focused on bonding with teammates from geographically dispersed areas, training on new and developing topics, and accessing resources for professional development and best practices.

“Learning together, putting faces and personalities with names, and sharing our unique backgrounds and how we each contribute to the command’s mission was the goal of the symposium. The symposium exceeded all expectations,” said Capt. Katherine Pasieta, commanding officer of RLSO Southeast.

Throughout the week, Sailors and civilians heard from experts and commanding officers across several mission sets. Briefs on military justice system, sexual assault and domestic violence, and victims’ services reforms were presented by Rear Adm. Jon Stephens, Office of Special Trial Counsel; Lt. Morgan McGill, Victims’ Legal Counsel Program; and Mrs. Heather Housel, Domestic Violence Attorney for RLSO Southeast. Active-duty personnel also attended learning sessions with Cmdr. Liz O’Connor and Cmdr. Charlie Gough focused on emerging national security law and operational law issues.

The symposium agenda was designed to engage and professionally develop all attendees. Civilian attendees took part in breakout sessions with Total Force Management (TFM) personnel, while active-duty presentations focused on JAG Corps detailing and meetings with detailer Cmdr. Theresa Poindexter. Operational stress control and resiliency training was also provided by Command Master Chief Bill Root from the Navy Culture and Force Resilience Office.

Community strength and camaraderie were also integral parts of the symposium calendar. Capt. Dan Cimmino of the Victims’ Legal Counsel Program and Ms. Kesha Rich from TFM led discussions about leadership and mentorship opportunities. Attendees also heard from Cmdr. Weston Fisher, the JAG Corps community manager, and Master Chief Navy Counselor Jason Caldera on community strength and projections within the organization’s officer and enlisted communities. Closing ceremonies included reflections and motivational remarks from Rear Adm. David Wilson, commander of Naval Legal Service Command.