Who is: the UFS Chief of Staff

COM._L.S-M_UFS_CoS…Meet Commodore Luciano Skar-Machado, who hails from Norway and is the new UF Starfleet Chief of Staff as of stardate 200501. If you check his service jacket, it might look like he hasn’t risen up through the ranks of UFS to gain this position, but the details visible in that record are insufficient. The Commodore has an alternate, a metaverse avatar named Data Axel. Our ‘Mr Data’ has worked in a plethora of UFS jobs – everything from Academy Yeoman, to Director of HQ Mentoring, to Cadet Company Commander, and more. His experience as Director of Personnel and Director of Fleet Operations led him to become the Vice Chief of Staff last year. When Rear Admiral Cheryl Skinstad retired in May, it seemed natural that someone with so much experience in the department be named her successor.

Asked who is actually CoS, Luciano or Data, he replied: “Luciano Skar-Machado is the Chief of Staff, I did that because I felt it is needed for UFS as a group to start having Real Life members in the Joint Chief positions.”

The Chief of Staff is in charge of the administrative duties for Ships of the Line and membership related aspects in the group. ”I’m here to help the new and old members, as well as the ships, stations and colonies,” said Skar-Machado. “Everything from filling out their Monthly Status Reports to helping a member find some information or know where to go for answers.”

Last year Personnel, Academy and CompOps undertook a massive transition when it was decided to move member records from the old database to the wiki. “The task took quite a few days of work, more than 4-5 hours a day for two weeks I think it was, spent transferring everything over. We also moved the essential information we needed onto google sheets, and removed data which wasn’t relevant anymore,” he explained. “But in all fairness I had great help from the people in CompOps so it was a fun task for me to do. I love paperwork so it was right up my alley.”

Part of that job was revising the member Service Jacket and entering all the important information held in the old UFS database on the new template for each and every active member of UFS. “We now have about 460 Service Jackets,” said Skar-Machado. “Personnel adds about 20ish for new members each month. With the new changes in the membership requirements more people will join too, so we expect the number of records to increase over the year.”

Fleet Operations is probably a lesser known, but vital job that is overseen by the UFS Chief of Staff. FleetOps handles the Monthly Status Reports (MSRs) from all the ships, stations and colonies each month, and assists them to do this correctly as it is a vital part of the administrative information required by UFS Command. FleetOps also ensures that each Ship of the Line (SotL) meets the requirements needed to remain commissioned. “Every month I get a report from the FleetOPs Director on the status of our SotLs and their MSRs,” he said. “Up to now it was not the most visible position, but changes are coming so we will see what happens over the near future.”

With the new SotL program being launched, it will be easier for the general membership to have a ship or station, the Commodore added. “It will be more rewarding for the ship to be able to go up in levels as they get more crew and meet new requirements. I like how the program looks so far, and can’t wait to see it grow and evolve for everyone to enjoy.”

When asked whether ‘Data’ has a cat named Spot, he replied: “Luc has a cat named Phoenix who is black and white, and a dog named Zico.” No spots.