Franchetti reveals three key priorities for tenure as CNO

By Abby Shepherd, Nick Wilson / January 9, 2024 at 6:48 PM

Warfighting, warfighters and a foundation that supports them are three key priorities for Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Lisa Franchetti, which she outlined for attendees at today's annual Surface Navy Association Symposium.

Franchetti, who was confirmed as CNO in early November, said these three priorities will ensure the Navy is the “most ready, combat-critical force that we can be.”

“We must have the best systems, the best weapons and platforms that will deter or defeat any adversary, anytime, anywhere,” Franchetti said.

Increased partnership with the private sector is necessary to strengthen the defense industrial base, she added, and the Navy is providing industry with a “clear demand signal.” This includes pursuing multiyear contracts, advance procurement timelines, supply chain investments and large-lot procurement of munitions, she said.

Franchetti also discussed the importance of what she called “getting more players on the field,” or increasing the number of operational ships and other platforms at the Navy’s command.

This effort, she said, will involve improving maintenance rates to keep more of the Navy’s existing ships active, fielding new ships on time and utilizing larger numbers of uncrewed platforms. Asked about the impact of this initiative on shipbuilding budgets, Franchetti declined to discuss future budget plans.

“It's about more platforms, getting our platforms that are on contract delivered on time [and] on cost. It's about getting the ships we have in maintenance out on time,” she explained.

“It's about stewardship, which is something a lot of us in this room have a big responsibility for -- how do we get the most out of our platforms as long as we can?” Franchetti continued. “It's also about integrating new and hybrid autonomous, unmanned technology to get more players on the field because again, this gives us more options.”