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NIOC-Colorado supports Navy from dry land

An anchor represents the Navy’s presence at the Joint Command and Control Center on Buckley Air Force Base, Colo. The Navy Information Operations Command-Colorado is a large unit on Buckley that provides global intelligence support for the Navy. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Phillip Houk/Released)

An anchor represents the Navy’s presence at the Joint Command and Control Center on Buckley Air Force Base, Colo. The Navy Information Operations Command-Colorado is a large unit on Buckley that provides global intelligence support for the Navy. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Phillip Houk/Released)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- At the heart of Colorado, a landlocked Navy unit provides intelligence to the Navy fleet worldwide.

According to the Navy Information Operations Command-Colorado's mission statement, the unit's main purpose is to sustain many of the agencies located within the Aerospace Data Facility-Colorado.

"First and foremost, we are a force provider," said Navy Cmdr. Mark, NIOC-Colorado commanding officer. "Of the three primary mission partners located in the ADF-C, my workforce predominantly supports the NSA mission."

The unit supports by providing a constant analysis of intelligence and a long-term study and maintenance of databases.

The mission consists of two primary components: a watch component that provides constant surveillance, and subject matter experts residing in various locations provide long-term analysis and maintenance for the NSA members residing here, Mark said.

NIOC-Colorado is one of five sites that provide intelligence support to Navy operations, with each of these sites providing support to specific geographic locations. NIOC-Colorado is unique within this system due to their ability to support any location across the world.

"Denver is unique because, in effect, we are the eyes of the fleet," said Mark. "We have a global perspective and are not aligned to a geographic center; we see and report a variety of information from a global perspective."

This unit, based completely on land, represents a force large enough to man a ship within the Navy.

"To put this in perspective, from a population standpoint, we are clearly larger than a Navy Destroyer," he said, referring to a U.S Navy Destroyer that requires a crew of more than 250 people.

Providing for a Navy unit on an Air Force installation presents several challenges NIOC-Colorado has had to overcome.

One of the challenges of not being on a Navy installation is the substitution or non-existence of certain personnel services. Where a Sailor can usually walk across the street and talk to any support staff, it becomes much more challenging when you have to work through a different military branch's services or have to call San Diego to reach the proper representative there, Mark said.

Despite these challenges, NIOC-Colorado continues to provide the support and intelligence required to by operations around the world.

"We perform all the core competencies of cytological capabilities including signals intelligence, cyber, space and information operations. Our Sailors execute these competencies with great precision and experience," he said.

Because of this highly skilled, landlocked Navy unit, service members abroad and at sea receive the versatile intelligence support they require to continue defending the nation.
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