THE MEN AND WOMEN OF THE NATION’S SEA SERVICES ARE SOME OF THE BEST AND BRIGHTEST FROM COMMUNITIES ACROSS THE LAND. The Sea Services are stronger because of their diversity--in thought, background, experience, race, ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation. However, there is still work to be done. The Naval Institute welcomes essays that address the continuing challenges in achieving diversity and creating an inclusive, collaborative workplace for all service members.

Participants can answer one of the following questions or write on another diversity and inclusion topic:

  • Are the Sea Services' efforts to promote diversity and inclusion working? What changes or improvements should be made?
  • What new policy, training, or education initiatives could the Sea Services adopt?
  • Are there new recruiting initiatives or outreach efforts the Sea Services should consider?

Submission Guidelines

  • Open to all contributors -- active-duty military, reservists, veterans, and civilians.
  • Essays must be no more than 2,000 words, excluding end notes and sources. Include word count on title page of the essay.
  • Essays are judged in the blind. Do not include your name on the title page or in the body of the essay.
  • Submit essay as a Word document at no later than 31 January 2023.
  • Essay must be original and not previously published (online or in print) or being considered for publication elsewhere. 

First Prize: $5,000

Second Prize: $2,500

Third Prize: $1,500

Selection Process

The Proceedings staff members will evaluate every essay and screen the top essays to a special Essay Selection Committee of at least six members who will include two members of the Naval Institute’s Editorial Board and four subject experts.

Announcement of the Winners

The winning essays will be published in Proceedings, either in print or online..

Selected Submissions

First Prize
Ensigns Nicholas J. Romanow and Madison Sargeant, U.S. Navy
Second Prize
Lieutenant Commander Michelle Kingsland, U.S. Navy
Third Prize
The Mouth of a Sailor: The Power of Language to Build an Inclusive Culture
Lieutenant Sarah Lemonick, U.S. Navy
Sponsored by
Raytheon Technologies

Previous Winners