Nov 22, 2012

Posted in Features

U.S.S. Asteria: Interview with the CO

U.S.S. Asteria: Interview with the CO

by CAPT Michael D. Garcia, USS Gygax

Commander Anna Treece is well-known within Region 4 for her work with USS Karme as well as the Region 4 Recruitment Officer.  She recently departed USS Karme and undertook a new challenge: launching a new chapter!  USS Asteria is the latest chapter to join Region 4 from the Phoenix area of Arizona, and Subspace Communicator Online sat down with her for a quick seven questions on shaking down a Sabre-class starship.

Subspace Communicator Online: Let’s begin with the chapter name, Asteria.  Who came up with it and how do you feel it best represents your new chapter?

Commander Anna Treece: Asteria is the Greek Titan / goddess of the oracles and prophecies of the night, the reading of the stars and a few other nifty things.  She was sought after by Zeus and ran away from him, becoming a drifting island.  But when Leto, also pursued by Zeus, needed a refuge, the island provided it and stopped moving.  The name was suggested by a new member of SFI and of our crew, Cinnamon Hayes.  She put it into the voting  at our first meeting, giving a good explanation and defense of her nomination.  Those gathered (9 of us) all voted between names as varied as Apache, Kokopelli, Star Dragon and Asteria. Asteria came out on top!  I feel the Asteria name reflects our offer of refuge and communal geekdom to all sci-fi fans, not just Trekkers.  We seek to be a place where all can come together and find that camaraderie.  Asteria was also involved with the stars and seeing into the future.  This reflects our general love of science and space exploration as well as protecting and nurturing the future.

SCO: What facets of Trek fandom will Asteria be focused on?

Treece: Our crew has so many varied interests it is hard to tell!  I put together a survey on SurveyMonkey to feel out what everyone was interested.  Cons and 10 Forward parties were the most popular.  Field trips also ranked up there. So definitely exploring and some R&R.  We will also be focusing on community service work, using our geekdom powers for good!  I don’t know if that qualifies as fandom but I believe it reflects Gene Roddenberry’s vision of a Utopia where there is IDIC and people care about each other.

SCO: How has your experience with recruitment been?

Treece: Crazy!  After a few people came together with the idea of putting together the shuttle, word started to spread on some Arizona Trek-themed FB groups.  We’ve had alot of interest and have joined up at least 3 new members to SFI as well as gathered some crewman (not SFI members..yet!).  We are looking forward to working with other groups in the area, including KAG, Maquis and other Sci Fi and nerd-doms, to pool resources and share members.

SCO: What are some of the challenges to creating a new chapter that you didn’t expect?

Treece: There are so many challenges for new chapters.  Right now, ours is getting things scheduled and going.  With the holiday season, it’s been a tad crazy at Maison de Treece and I’m sure at Plaza de Young (Zeb Young, Executive Officer).  We’re working on the by-laws, the advancement protocols, website (Digital Shakedown for the win!) as well as finding meeting places (libraries book up fast!) and getting activities together for the next few months.  It feels overwhelming at times. But I’m lucky to have a great, experienced XO that understands SFI policies and shares my ideas on how a chapter should work.  And the crew has been really responsive and supportive, coming forward with ideas, critiques and volunteering to help.

SCO: You have the current Mothership of the Year supporting you in this endeavor; how instrumental has their help been in the creation of Asteria?

Treece: The Golden Gate is awesome-sauce.  Admiral Nottage has been very helpful in offering advice, criticisms and allowing us to cannibalize the Golden Gate’s manual as seed material for our own.  He’s been incredibly supportive and I am grateful!  He checks in with me regularly and helps the Asteria stay on course for launch.

SCO: You mentioned earlier that Zeb Young is your inaugural XO.  How long have you known him and what do you think he’ll bring to the leadership of Asteria?

Treece: I have known Zeb for about a year now through another ship.  He has XO experience already with the USS Constitution and his input has been beyond fantastic.  He has shouldered much of the responsibility in regards to the Advancement procedures and the Marines.  We’ve been working on the by laws and handbook together as well.  Zeb is a proud Starfleet Marine and I look forward to being brought onto the ship.  He is passionate about Starfleet and the SFMC.  Passion and Vision flavored with discipline and organization are a winning combination!

SCO: Are you engaging in the Accelerated Shakedown Program?

Treece: I think the accelerated program is great opportunity for chapters with experienced members to get underway quickly and efficiently. The plan is for the Asteria to participate in the Accelerated Shakedown Program as well as the Digital Shakedown Program that the region has.  As we have two experienced SFI’ers at the helm and 2 others as part of the crew, we are pooling our knowledge, experience and resources to get the ship launched hopefully during Phoenix Comicon in May 2013.  Keep your fingers crossed.

SCO: Finally, what advice might you give to any prospective COs that are thinking about filing that VRR (Vehicle Registration Request)?

Treece: Go for it.  Seriously. If your passion lies in the fandom and the love of Trek, go for it.  Find your fellow fans in your area (or online for correy chapters!) and go for it.  You have nothing to lose by trying.  It takes time. It takes effort. It takes work. It takes dedication but it is so worth it.

We would like to thank Commander Treece for taking time out of her busy day to discuss the launching of her chapter.  If you would like to find out more information on Asteria, you can visit their website at