NEWPORT NEWS, Va., Sept. 28, 2009 -- Congressman Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (D-VA-03) and United States Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus toured Northrop Grumman Corporation's (NYSE:NOC) Shipbuilding sector's shipyard in Newport News, Va. today.
"I had a great visit to the shipyard today," said Mabus. "I got to see a lot of what Northrop Grumman does here with the Navy to build ships. The most impressive thing about the shipyard is the quality of the workforce. You've got fourth generation workers and the Apprentice School which is one of the most innovative and longest service schools of its kind."
Congressman Scott and Secretary Mabus received a briefing on the shipyard's current work and capabilities, toured aircraft carrier and submarine construction facilities and met with shipbuilders. They also visited the shipyard's Apprentice School and toured the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) and met with members of the ship's crew. Bush is currently undergoing post-delivery maintenance work, also known as the ship's post shakedown availability.
"This is the only shipyard we have that builds aircraft carriers and one of two that builds submarines," said Mabus. "There is a need to protect and preserve the industrial base of the country. If you lose the skilled workforce, it's virtually impossible to get it back. It's one of the things we have to think about in Washington D.C. -- how we build ships, the number of ships we build, the type of ships to build -- to ensure we keep skilled workers in the industrial base."
Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding's Newport News facility is the only shipyard capable of building both nuclear-powered submarines and aircraft carriers. The company is teamed with General Dynamics Electric Boat to build Virginia-class submarines. There are currently four aircraft carriers undergoing maintenance work at the shipyard: USS George H. W. Bush (CVN 77), USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), USS Enterprise (CVN 65) and USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71). Additionally, the lead ship of the next generation aircraft carrier class, Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), is currently under construction with a keel laying ceremony planned for November.
Northrop Grumman Corporation is a leading global security company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in aerospace, electronics, information systems, shipbuilding and technical services to government and commercial customers worldwide.
CONTACT: Jennifer Dellapenta Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding (757) 380-3558 Jennifer.Dellapenta@ngc.com