Welcome to

Clement Michael "Mike" Petters; Dec 25, 1959, married Jun 26, 1983 to
Nancy Garrett Briggs; Aug 07, 1959, they have two daughters.
Their first daughter was named Sarah Winston Petters; She was born Oct 11, 1984

Their second daughter was named Caroline Garrett Petters; She was born Apr 20, 1989

BARTHLE FAMILY -family tree INDEX (A list of the names) for DESCENDANTS click here
The life of Clement Michael Petters
(The first son of Joan & Clem Petters)

I was born Dec 25, 1959 at 3:25AM in Brooksville Fla.
and Nancy was born Aug 07, 1959 2:20PM in Franklin, VA.

Mike Petters
Corporate Vice President and President, Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding
Mike Petters is corporate vice president and president of Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, the world’s leading military shipbuilder.

In this role, Petters is responsible for the design, construction and overhaul of conventionally-powered surface combatants, amphibious and auxiliary ships and nuclear-powered submarines and aircraft carriers. Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding has approximately $5.5 billion in revenues and nearly 40,000 employees. Petters is also a member of the company’s corporate policy council.

Prior to this appointment, Petters was president of the company’s Newport News sector. His responsibilities included the Virginia-class submarine program; USS George H. W. Bush (CVN 77) and CVN 21 aircraft carrier programs; aircraft carrier overhaul and refueling; submarine fleet maintenance; commercial and naval ship repair; and business and technology development.

A native of Florida, Petters earned a bachelor’s degree in physics from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1982. After completing nuclear propulsion training, he was assigned to the USS George Bancroft where he held progressively responsible leadership positions, including reactor controls assistant, communications officer and refueling officer. After joining the Naval Reserve in 1988, he participated in three NATO exercises as submarine control officer. In 1993, Petters earned a master’s in business administration from the College of William and Mary.

Petters joined the company’s Newport News sector in 1987 in the Los Angeles-class submarine construction division. He has held a number of increasingly responsible positions throughout the organization. These include production supervisor for submarines, marketing manager for submarines and for carriers, vice president for aircraft carrier programs, and vice president for contracts and pricing.

Petters was appointed by former Virginia Governor Tim Kaine to serve on the Advisory Council on Revenue Estimates. He serves on the Board of Directors for the American Shipbuilding Association, the Naval Submarine League and is a member of both the Board of Directors and the Board of Trustees of the Naval Aviation Museum Foundation. He also serves on the Distinguished Advisory Board for the Dolphin Scholarship Foundation.

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.

September 16, 2004: MFCC 04-09

To My Colleagues:
After 17 years of dedicated service, Tom Schievelbein, corporate vice president and president of our Newport News sector, has elected to take early retirement effective Nov. 1. I am pleased to announce that Mike Petters, vice president of Human Resources, Administration and Trades for our Newport News sector, will succeed Tom as corporate vice president and president of Northrop Grumman Newport News, reporting to me. Mike will also become a member of the company's Corporate olicy Council.

Tom's decision to retire reflects his desire to spend more time with his wife Betty after having made numerous contributions to Northrop Grumman's growth and success. Since 2001, Tom has led Newport News and he skillfully guided the sector's integration with Northrop Grumman. Under Tom's leadership, Newport News has delivered consistent financial results, meeting or exceeding its financial goals, and strengthening the sector's competitive position.

Tom began his career with Northrop Grumman in 1987 and demonstrated exemplary leadership throughout his tenure with the company. He also served as vice president for Human Resources and Administration, vice president of Strategy and Naval Program Development and vice president for Naval Marketing.

Mike joined Northrop Grumman in 1987 in the submarine construction division. He has held a number of increasingly responsible positions including production supervisor for Submarines; marketing manager for Submarines and for Carriers; vice president for Aircraft Carrier Programs; and vice president for Contracts and Pricing. He was named to his current position in Human Resources in 2001. Most recently, he was instrumental in the successful collective bargaining agreement between Northrop Grumman and the United Steelworkers of America.

A native of Florida, Mike graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1982 with a bachelor's degree in physics. He served as an officer aboard the USS George Bancroft before joining the Naval Reserve in 1988. Mike earned his MBA from the College of William and Mary in 1993.

Mike brings a thorough knowledge of vital sector functions and critical shipbuilding experience to his new position. His diverse management and leadership experience makes him well prepared for this uniquely challenging position. The work of Newport News is of critical importance to our company, the U.S. Navy and to our nation's security and we are fortunate to have an executive of his caliber joining our senior management team.

Please join me in congratulating Mike, and wishing Tom well in his upcoming retirement.

Ronald D. Sugar
Chairman, CEO and President
C. Michael Petters to Lead Northrop Grumman's Newport News Sector
September 16, 2004: 11:56 a.m. EST

- LOS ANGELES, Sept. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Northrop Grumman Corporation today announced that its Board of Directors has elected C. Michael Petters as corporate vice president and president of the company's Newport News sector, succeeding Thomas C. Schievelbein, 51, who has elected to take early retirement.

Petters will assume his new position on Nov. 1, 2004. He will report to Ronald D. Sugar, Northrop Grumman's chairman, chief executive officer and president.

Petters, 44, currently serves as the sector's vice president of human resources, administration and trades, and most recently was instrumental in the successful collective bargaining agreement between the company and the United Steelworkers of America. During his 17 years with the company, he has held increasingly responsible management positions including production manager for submarines, marketing manager for submarines and for carriers, vice president for aircraft carrier programs, and vice president for contracts and pricing.

"Mike's experience in heading vital sector functions makes him an ideal choice to lead the Newport News sector in the years ahead," said Sugar. "He brings thorough knowledge and critical nuclear shipbuilding experience to his new position. Mike will be an excellent addition to my senior leadership team."

Sugar added, "We thank Tom for his eight years of leadership of the shipyard's operations. Tom was key to Northrop Grumman's successful integration of the sector into the overall corporation following our purchase of Newport News in 2001. The sector has been an outstanding performer under his stewardship. We will miss his expertise, but we respect his wish to take early retirement. We wish him and his wife Betty the very best."

"I've had the great privilege of running the operations at Newport News for five years and then leading the entire sector for the past three years as part of Northrop Grumman," said Schievelbein. "It's been a wonderful experience and I thank Northrop Grumman for the opportunity; however, I've decided it's time to begin the next chapter of my life, which will include spending more time with my wife and pursuing some of my personal interests."

Petters joined Newport News Shipbuilding in 1987 in the submarine construction division. He has held a number of increasingly responsible positions throughout the organization. Petters graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1982 with a bachelor's degree in physics. He served as an officer aboard the USS George Bancroft before joining the Naval Reserve in 1988. He earned an MBA from the College of William and Mary in 1993.

Northrop Grumman Newport News, headquartered in Newport News, Va., is the nation's sole designer, builder, and refueler of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and one of only two companies capable of designing and building nuclear powered submarines. Newport News also provides after-market services for a wide array of naval and commercial vessels. The Newport News sector employs about 19,000 people.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a global defense company headquartered in Los Angeles, Calif. Northrop Grumman provides technologically advanced, innovative products, services and solutions in systems integration, defense electronics, information technology, advanced aircraft, shipbuilding and space technology. With 125,000 employees, and operations in all 50 states and 25 countries, Northrop Grumman serves U.S. and international military, government and commercial customers.

Northrop Grumman Corporation

Northrop Names New Head Of Newport News Sector
September 16, 2004: 14:59 p.m. EST

--Northrop Grumman Corp. (NOC) said Thursday it has named C. Michael Petters president of its Newport News sector. He succeeds Thomas Schievelbein, who is taking an early retirement.

Northrop, the Los Angeles-based global defense giant, said Petters, 44 years old, will assume his new position Nov. 1. He will report to Ronald Sugar, Northrop's chairman, chief executive and president.

Schievelbein, 51, led the Newport News shipyard operations for eight years and was key to the integration of the sector into Northrop Grumman, following its purchase of Newport News in 2001. He plans to spend more time with his wife and pursue personal interests in his retirement. Petters currently serves as the vice president for human resources, administration and trades, at the Newport News sector.

During Petters' 17 years with the company, he has held management positions including production manager for submarines, vice president for aircraft carrier programs, and vice president for contracts and pricing.

Shares of Northrop recently traded at $52.28, up 48 cents, or 1%, on the New York Stock Exchange. Dow Jones Newswires 09-16-04 1459ET Copyright (C) 2004 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Mike Petters, Northrop Grumman Newport News' take-charge president
Mike Petters, above, speaks to a shipyard night school class.
By ALLISON CONNOLLY, The Virginian-Pilot © March 19, 2006

— No one holds Mike Petters accountable more than Mike Petters.

The president of Northrop Grumman Newport News learned accountability at a young age as the oldest of six born to orange growers.

When he wanted to go to a private high school and have a shot at the U.S. Naval Academy, he did odd jobs and worked long summers in the orange groves to pay his way . When he found himself struggling in algebra class in high school, he forced himself to repeat it, knowing it would help him with calculus and physics down the line. W hen he had to take boxing at the academy, the self-described nonfighter stood in the ring and took punches from his roommate, hoping to learn something from it.

Today, Petters, 46, runs the nation’s largest shipyard, employing 19,000 workers. It is the United States’ sole builder of aircraft carriers and shares submarine-building duties with General Dynamics Electric Boat in Groton, Conn. Petters is accountable to Northrop Grumman’s shareholders, to the taxpayers who pay for the ships, and to the yard’s only customer, the Navy.

It can be a difficult balancing act. Cash flow can be slowed or even halted in the middle of a job. Petters had hoped, for example, to smoothly transition the fitters and welders hired to build the carrier George H.W. Bush to the Navy’s next-generation class of aircraft carriers, CVN-21. With a two-year delay in financing, however, he has had to retrain those workers in the past year as electricians and sheet-metal workers to keep them busy.

The alternative would be layoffs, which could jeopardize future shipbuilding.

“Actions speak louder than words,” Petters said. “The way you behave when you don’t think anyone is watching you, as a leader, is going to send the loudest message.”

Aboard one of Northrop Grumman Corp.’s private jets one night last month, Petters relaxed , bound for a day of meetings in Washington. He was dressed in one of his “uniforms” – a red-check button-down shirt, khaki pants, navy blue socks and brown docksider-style shoes.

Few people would assume Petters is responsible for a large sector of one of the country’s biggest defense contractors, a company that employs more than 123,000 and took in nearly $31 billion in revenue last year.

Even fewer would think he came from humble beginnings.

Born on Christmas Day 1959, Petters was the oldest of six children living in St. Joseph, Fla., 40 minutes north of Tampa. The family owned a couple hundred acres of groves and had a work force that farmed other groves in the area.

Petters was taught, “If you didn’t learn something today, it was wasted.” His parents were staunch supporters of the military. His father retired from the National Guard as a lieutenant colonel, and Petters said he was the highest-ranking officer in Florida who never attended college. All six children served in the military, including his only sister, Susie, who has been selected for promotion to colonel in the Army.

St. Joseph was more of a hamlet than a full-fledged town. It was Catholic, and Sunday Mass was in Latin. Kindergarten through eighth grade were conducted in a single trailer.

“I remember when the second trailer showed up,” Petters said. “That was a big deal.”

Petters was determined to go to the Naval Academy, and he knew he’d have a better shot if he went to a Catholic high school in Tampa. His family couldn’t afford the $1,000-a-year tuition, so he applied and won a work-study scholarship. A neighbor who worked in Tampa dropped him off at 6 a.m. each morning. He would sweep floors, mow grass and clean blackboards before class started. After school, he resumed the chores before his ride came. He earned additional money during the summers working for his father in the groves. There, he got his first taste of management at 15 as supervisor of a pesticide crew.

“It was hard work and hot work,” he said.

Petters didn’t make it to the Naval Academy right away. He was told to reapply. After a year at Louisiana State University, he became a midshipman.

He met his future wife, the cousin of a classmate, on a blind date.

“I asked my cousin later, 'Out of all your friends, why did you pick Mike?’” Nancy Petters said. “He said, 'Well, he’s just a good guy.’”

Petters became a submariner after graduating the academy in 1982 with a bachelor’s degree in physics. It was a gift subscription to The Wall Street Journal at age 26 that inspired a love for business.

“The more I read, the more I wanted to know,” he said. “It was a whole new language to me.”

In 1987, he got a job at the shipyard in the Los Angeles-class submarine construction division. He earned his MBA at night from The College of William and Mary. Any time he had in between was spent with Nancy and his two daughters.

When 32-year shipyard veteran Danny Hunley, vice president of trades, education and training, met Petters, he thought he was “green but unusually bright.” The shipyard business is a tight-knit community that breeds generations of shipyard workers, and outsiders can find it intimidating, Hunley said. Petters was attentive and fit in.

“He was someone on the climb,” Hunley said. “He was getting the right experience.”

In 1991, Petters was asked to lead the company’s marketing for submarine programs. He was a natural choice given his career as a submariner, but his timing could not have been worse: The Newport News shipyard had just filed suit against the Navy – the yard’s only customer – over its attempt to cancel the Seawolf-class submarine program. It was a historic event that would test the young rising executive. He remembers his cold sales calls to the Navy were, indeed, cold.

“I didn’t break the china,” he said. “My job was to pick up the pieces. I was learning so much about how our business operated, how the industry operated, how Washington operated . It was almost an education versus a job.”

His appointment as vice president of human resources, administration and trades in 2001 brought another test – negotiating a three-year contract with the union. It was the first since a four-month strike in 1999, and he felt pressure from both the corporate office in Los Angeles and the Navy to make sure a deal was struck.

He started more than six months before the existing contract was up, meeting with supervisors and foremen – the closest layer to the workers – to explain how decisions are made and to understand the effects those decisions had on the work force.

Alton Glass Jr., president of United Steelworkers of America Local 8888, which represents the yard’s approximately 8,000 hourly production workers, said Petters’ groundwork made all the difference when they met at the negotiating table. While a strike was threatened at one point, both Glass and Petters think they came out of it with the best contract they could.

“His reputation is a positive one,” Glass said. “Mike may have the most positive one here in 30 years.”

When Petters became president in 2004, the yard was in the throes of a very public dispute with Navy brass over cost overruns on the Virginia-class submarine program and the CVN-21.

He was able to overcome the stalemate by communicating directly with the customer about what the problems were and how they could be resolved, said Rear Adm. David Architzel, the Navy’s program executive officer for aircraft carriers.

“We’re both facing budget issues,” Architzel said. “It has to be a two-way conversation. If you can’t communicate with each other, you’re not going to resolve them.”

At the same time, Petters made it clear to everyone at the shipyard that they need to fulfill their commitment. He created an executive-level position to ensure programs are on time and on budget, and he says progress has been made.

“I’m going to withhold my enthusiasm until I see real costs coming off programs,” Petters said. Ron Sugar, chief executive officer of Northrop Grumman Corp., recently accompanied Petters on a tour of the shipyard and to meetings with local business leaders. While the company’s shipyards on the Gulf Coast were hit hard by the hurricane, Newport News saw profits increase in the past year. The past four overhauls – the carriers Enterprise, Dwight D. Eisenhower and George Washington and the submarine Hyman G. Rickover – were completed within budget, which pleased both the Navy and the company’s shareholders.

“He has been relentlessly driving performance at the shipyard,” Sugar said.

At the same time, Petters has set realistic expectations with the customer, said Newport News Chief Financial Officer Barbara Niland, who estimates the costs for contract bids.

“He has high expectations,” she said. “He expects you to do what you say you’re going to do.”

At a recent leadership meeting of the yard’s top executives, Petters showed a series of slides depicting examples of problems around the yard, such as a tangle of cables and wires in a shop, and a worker lifting a heavy object by himself when he should have had help.

Another showed the damage caused when a welder’s torch touched off a small fire on a ship being repaired.

“What happened here?” Petters asked the crowd. “How did ownership fail in this picture?”

He pointed to a tinged sign in the middle of the picture that said , “ No hot work.”

“There were opportunities there,” he said, “not just for the guy who actually did the hot work but for at least one other person, and probably a handful of people, to keep that from happening before it ever started.”

He explained that he wasn’t trying to embarrass anyone. “You have to show that you care enough about it so the work force knows that they should care about it.”

Petters is optimistic about the future of his business, more now than when he became president two years ago.

While the Navy is delaying financing for full production of the CVN-21 by a year to 2008, the shipyard has secured a promise from it that the $13.7 billion program will be paid for in full. The first ship in the class is scheduled to be delivered in 2015.

“I think we are entering into a new era here,” Petters told a crowd of shipbuilding executives, suppliers and Navy brass at a recent annual industry day in Washington sponsored by the American Shipbuilding Association. “I really think we have a major breakthrough on the part of the Navy. As an industry, we have to go beyond selling and execute that plan.”

This year, the yard will deliver the submarine Texas, the first in the Virginia class for Newport News. In October, Petters will see the christening of the carrier George H.W. Bush.

Next year, he will hash out another contract with the union.

While they don’t agree on some things, such as how much workers should pay for health care and the company’s use of outside contractors in the shipyard, Glass said he and Petters do agree on one thing: saving jobs.

“We are definitely going to need ships in the docks, and I think most people believe Mike will do that,” Glass said.

Again, accountability is Petters’ theme.

“It is essential, given the dynamics of where we are today, that we are able to stand up and tell our customer what it is we’re going to do, and do what we said we were going to do,” he said. “We lose that credibility, and we lose control of our destiny.”