NEAs often wear tuxedos when carrying out duties in the presence of the Cheneys and their guests.
“We are allotted special clothing allowances to purchase and maintain any uniform we are required,” said Rodriguez.
Dressed to impress, the way the Sailors carry themselves, what they wear, and, more importantly, how they interact with guests are all part of the demands of working in the company of national leaders.
“I would advise Sailors who have completed Culinary Specialized Training and are interested in this position to take a House and Management Course,” said Elmer Anies.
“This will enhance your knowledge of running a sophisticated property and entertaining at events ranging from different sorts of ceremonies to formal dinners.”
When talking to the NEAs about their experiences, they inevitably pivot the conversation back to talking about how much they enjoy working for Vice President and Mrs. Cheney. Though many of them have been at the Residence for several years, they still have a sense of awe about their work.
“I feel I have [reached]the pinnacle of my Navy career as a culinary specialist,” said Rodriquez. “I started off as a seaman apprentice, worked as a captain’s cook and then as a ship’s cook.
“The Vice-President’s Residence is the best place to be. On a ship there are many limits in cooking: time, equipment and the availability of ingredients,” said Rodriguez. “Here, we have time to test recipes, learn new skills, develop menus and be creative. This job is about so much more than being a chef. You’re a manager, a detailer and in charge of protocol.”
“I’m still excited to come to work here,” added Gus Anies, who emigrated from the Republic of the Philippines at 16 years of age and enlisted at 19. “As a child, I worked selling newspapers and cleaning recycled bottles to help out the family. Compared to what my life was like growing up, it’s amazing that I’m here doing this and that so much trust has been placed in me,” said Gus Anies.
The Navy Enlisted Aides’ dedication to excellence and elegant presentation among the leaders of this country has not been overlooked. Here, among the halls of the Vice President’s Residence in Washington, D.C., one man and his wife are especially grateful to these Sailors.
“The exceptional service that the Residence Navy Enlisted Aides provide my family and our guests makes us feel safe and comfortable in our home and on the road,” said Vice President Cheney. “Lynne and I are grateful for the Navy men and women who serve at the Naval Observatory, and for the service of all men and women in our Armed Forces who are working hard to protect our country.”