|U.S.S. BLACK HAWK
Sovereign Class Starship
While the chapter kept busy since 2003, with Admiral Higdon, at the beginning of 2007 being appointed to his old position of Deputy STARFLEET Historian for a second time, working with newly appointed STARFLEET Historian Lieutenant General Wade Hoover. Higdon also picked up the added duties as the STARFLEET Marine Corps (SFMC) Historian later that year.
In 2008 saw both Black Hawk Commanding Officer Jeffery Higdon and First Officer Karen "Number One" Higdon honored with promotions with STARFLEET. Rear Admiral Higdon was promoted to Vice Admiral in February. In what can be only described as surprise, Fleet Admiral Sal Lizard, Commander, STARFLEET, announced that Fleet Captain Karen Higdon was promoted to the rank of Commodore. Just moments before her name was announced *LIVE* over streaming video from the IC2008 site in Ithaca, New York, just after the Fleet Admiral said "To the Rank of Commodore...", and pausing long enough for Karen to say, "A rank I'll never see...", when Sal announced her name "...Karen Higdon." The newly minted Commodore did a double take as the Admiral produced one of his old Commodore pins and affixed it on the shirt of the still unbelieving Flag Officer.
In trying to expand participation of the fellow members of the USS Black Hawk, especially those who were members of the 263rd Marine Strike Group, the Hawk's Talons, it was decided in August, 2008 that the Admiral, in his reservist guise of Lieutenant General in the SFMC, would step down as Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the 263rd and in his place appoint Major James Craig as OIC and Marine Captain William Hof as his Deputy OIC. At the end of October, Major Craig and Marine Captain Hof decided to switch positions, with Hof becoming OIC and Craig assuming the position of DOIC. The General then promoted Marine Captain Hof to Major, in reflection of his new position.
The year 2009 became the busiest for the commander and the members of the USS Black Hawk. While their Shakedown chapter, the USS Aurora was nominated and won the Region 5 Shakedown Ship of the year, the USS Black Hawk was nominated in categories including Ship and Mothership of the Year, and Admiral Higdon was nominated for Officer, Flag Officer and Commanding Officer of the Year. Major William Hof was nominated as Member of the Year. Region 12 announced the winners on April 5th with the Black Hawk named the Region 12 Mothership of the Year and Admiral Higdon named Commanding Officer of the Year!
As the future of the USS Black Hawk looked very bright an event within Region Twelve would shape the future of the Black Hawk and it's position as a leading chapter in STARFLEET. In February 2009, Region Twelve Coordinator Wayne Killough, who had only served as R12RC since July 2008, abruptly resigned, citing health and job relocating as reason. For the third time within a year an election for the Region Twelve Coordinator took place. it was because of this and the previous election that Admiral Higdon stood for election for R12RC. The field was crowded with Vice Admiral Michael Dugas, the former R13RC, who had just moved back from Region Thirteen to his former home region with the USS White Star, throwing his hat in the ring; Commodore Donald A. Glenn of the USS BortaS from Central Illinois also joining in those who wished to serve as R12RC; and Commodore Ray Brown of the USS William Wallace also joining those seeking the position.
On April 5, 2009 the results of the campaign, Admiral Higdon received the following communiqué from Fleet Admiral Sal Lizard, Commander, STARFLEET:
To: Jeffery Higdon & the 12th Fleet
From: STARFLEET Headquarters - Office of the Commander, STARFLEET
Re: Appointment of Region 12 Regional Coordinator
As of this date, 05 April 2009, I have received word from the Inspector General's Office that, in the matter of the Region 12 Regional Coordinator Election, Vice Admiral Jeffery Higdon has received a plurality of the votes cast and has met the eligibility requirements to serve as the Regional Coordinator.
So, in accordance with STARFLEET rules, Vice Admiral Higdon is hereby recognized as the winning said election and is now appointed to the position of Regional Coordinator of Region 12.
Vice Admiral Higdon, you are to assume the command of Starbase 12 and the Twelfth Fleet. Also, the USS Black Hawk NCC 75004 is authorized to serve as the Flagship of Region 12.
I look forward to your participation on the Admiralty Board as the representative of STARFLEET Region 12.
Congratulations and best wishes for your future success!Warmest regards,
Fleet Admiral Sal Lizard,
With this announcement the USS Black Hawk Commanding Officer, Vice Admiral Jeffery Higdon, was appointed, following the election. as the new Region Twelve Coordinator (R12RC). With the Admiral's election, the USS Black Hawk became the Flagship of Region Twelve and Rockford, Illinois became the home of Starbase Twelve.
On May 16, 2009, the Officers and Crew of the Black Hawk held it's Second Recruiting Day at Tomorrow is Yesterday. It was a pleasant event and was attended by Admiral Higdon, Commodore Karen Higdon (First Officer), Captain Tom Moore (2nd Officer), Major William Hof (263rd OIC) and Captain Chris Higdon (Conn), We were joined by Lieutenant Colonel Eric Johannson of the USS Sunflower. One person was recruited because of these efforts and each attendee was presented later with the USS Black Hawk Commendation. Major Hof premiered his video for the USS Black Hawk at the Recruiting Day.
Admiral Higdon and his family traveled via the Admiral's Gig (formerly the Captain's Yacht) to Topeka, Kansas, where the annual Region 12 Summit/Conference was held. This event, held for the first time as a one day picnic on May 26, was held in the Westlake Shelter at Gage Park in Topeka and hosted by the USS Hellfire & Brimstone. The Admiral, as R12RC, was able to present the annual R12 Awards as well special citations and commendations.
Meanwhile Major Hof was busy with the activities of STARFLEET, SFMC & the 263rd. Hof represented Region Twelve and Admiral Higdon as one of two proxies at IC2009 during the corporate ECAB Meeting held in Greenville, NC. later in the year he would start working with INFOCOM, SFMC, eventually being appointed as DOICINFOCOM in mid- 2010. He also helped out the SFMCA in helping restructure a few of the classes and assisting when needed.
As 2010 began, plans were being made for the Admiral and his family to travel to the 2010 International Conference which was to be held at the Western Hills Guest Ranch at the Sequoyah State Park outside Wagoner, Oklahoma, in which Admiral Higdon served as the Host RC, it was decided to stage a version of the Region Twelve Summit, called the R12 Conference, during the Friday of the IC.
On July 29, 2010, the Admiral, Number One and Captain Chris Higdon boarded the Admiral's Gig and made what turned out to be a 17 hour trip from Rockford, in Northern Illinois, to Sequoyah State Park, near Wagoner, in mid-central of eastern Oklahoma, stopping on the way to pick up Honorary Black Hawk member Admiral Helen Pawlowski, who served as the Region Nine Proxy.
On Friday, July 30th, Admiral Higdon joined his fellow RCs at the ECAB Meeting. A lot of good work was done as the Admiral represented the interest of Region Twelve with his Senior Vice Regional Coordinator, Rear Admiral Bea Hart, sitting next to him. Later, the Higdons were joined by Lt. Colonel Hof, who had traveled from his home to IC2010 and attended the Region Twelve Conference held that night. The welcoming video, done by Colonel Hof at the request of Admiral Higdon, was a huge success.
The highlight for the USS Black Hawk crew was the promotion of Captain Christopher Higdon to the rank of Fleet Captain, presented to him personally by the Commander, STARFLEET, Fleet Admiral Sal Lizard during the General Session. The Higdons also attend a few of the the forums and the SFMC Muster. Colonel Hof, representing the COINFOCOM, gave a report on INFORCOM. Later that evening, Admiral Higdon took part in a fundraiser for Region Twelve by getting hit in the face with a pie.
The return trip to Starbase Twelve took the Higdons only 11 hours, including a stop in St. Louis to drop off Admiral Pawlowski. All in all it was an enjoyable trip.