Atlantic Ocean - The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) held a change of command ceremony on the flag bridge while conducting a composite training unit exercise, July 24.
Capt. Kavon Hakimzadeh took the helm from Capt. Nicholas Dienna as Harry S. Truman’s commanding officer. The change of command was presided by Vice Adm. Andrew L. Lewis, commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet and commander Joint Forces Command Norfolk. Also in attendance were Rear Adm. Andrew J. Loiselle, commander, Carrier Strike Group 8, and Rear Adm. Daniel Cheever, commander, Carrier Strike Group 4.
“I’m honored to be taking command of USS Harry S. Truman and grateful to Capt. Dienna for all he has done for this incredible ship and crew,” said Hakimzadeh. “I look forward to serving with this winning team, and I know we are ready to continue the business of defending the United States, assuring our allies and partners and faithfully representing the United States of America.”
Hakimzadeh previously served as the executive and commanding officer of the “Seahawks” of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 126, executive officer of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), and commanding officer of the Blue Ridge-class amphibious command ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20). Also a seasoned pilot, Hakimzadeh has more than 3,100 flight hours and 815 carrier arrested landings as an E-2 Hawkeye naval flight officer.
Dienna expressed how grateful he is to have served as Harry S. Truman’s commanding officer June 2017-July 2019.
“I’m both proud and humbled to have served as the commanding officer of USS Harry S. Truman,” said Dienna. “During my time here, I have had the extraordinary privilege of leading amazing women and men. These Sailors are the soul of the United States Navy, America’s best, and will do whatever they are called to do to accomplish the mission and protect freedom, democracy, and American interests anywhere, any time. I leave with the utmost confidence that they will continue to excel under the leadership of Capt. Hakimzadeh. In the longstanding tradition of America’s Navy, I wish all the Sailors embarked in and assigned to Truman fair winds and following seas.”
During his tour, Dienna led Harry S. Truman through a successful workup cycle and an eight-month deployment that showcased the first dynamic force employment. During the deployment, Harry S. Truman supported Operation Inherent Resolve, participated in exercises such as Baltic Operations 2018 in the Adriatic Sea and the NATO-led Exercise Trident Juncture in the Arctic Circle, marking the first time an aircraft carrier has operated in the Arctic Circle for more than two decades.
Following deployment, Dienna led the Harry S. Truman through a successful sustainment phase as part of the Navy’s Optimized Fleet Readiness Plan to ensure the Harry S. Truman’s operational readiness. In 2018, Harry S. Truman was awarded the Navy’s East Coast “Battle E” for aircraft carrier battle effectiveness.
During the ceremony, Loiselle awarded Dienna with the Legion of Merit for superior service and conduct during his tour.
Harry S. Truman is underway conducting COMPTUEX with the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group.