Admiral Loy is the 21st Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard.
Rear Admiral William J. Holland, U. S. Navy (Retired)
Argument is at the heart of growth of ideas; the Naval Institute has performed some of its best service when the arguments aired have not been congruent to current service policy That the arguments may be wrong or pig-headed is less important than that they are focused, logical, and direct. Until opened and examined, one cannot be sure of the issues or their merits (unless, of course, the argument proposes that the United States buy biplanes or conventionally powered submarines).
No organization can claim to be professional without a formal means to communicate ideas and opinions through and among the body of members. The quality of this communication is indicative of the intellectual vitality of the organization as well as its morale. At the same time, no organization can endure and prosper without continually refreshing its knowledge of past successes and failures. It is from these lessons that the institutional traditions have meaning and utility.
Any organization without a little chaos is dead, and the Naval Institute provides one of the best tools for creating and maintaining some disorder, debate, and argument within the naval services. Proceedings in particular provides a forum in which every level of the organization is able to contribute and participate. That wide participation as much as the variety and quality of argument is a source of pride to the members of the profession and the envy of every other service.
Admiral Holland, a career submariner, recently retired as the President of the AFCEA Educational Foundation.