I am honored to serve as the 24th Commandant of the Coast Guard. When I assumed the duties from Admiral Thad Allen at noon today, it concluded a series of key rotations and marked the setting of a new watch to lead our service.
Serving with me on this watch are Vice Admiral Sally Brice-O’Hara, Vice Commandant, Master Chief Michael Leavitt, Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard and Master Chief Mark Allen, Master Chief Petty Officer of Reserve Forces. Each assumed their duties over the past ten days. They are all very experienced professionals who have been tried and tested in the field. We are also joined by Vice Admiral Robert Parker, Commander, Atlantic Area, Vice Admiral Manson Brown, Commander Pacific Area, Vice Admiral John Currier, Chief-of-Staff and Future Deputy Commandant of Mission Support and Rear Admiral Brian Salerno, Deputy Commandant for Operations. I am proud to serve alongside this exceptionally talented group of leaders.
My watch will be guided by the following vision for our service:
We are defined by our missions, people and heritage. We will selflessly serve our country and perform our duties in a manner that secures the trust and confidence of mariners and citizens alike. We will set a course that steadies the service, honors our profession, strengthens our partnerships and respects our shipmates.
This vision will be achieved by the incoming watch through clear focus on select projects and initiatives currently under way in our service. Instead of creating new tasking, we intend to emphasize vital initiatives, leverage teams that are in place now and move these efforts forward to completion. I will provide more specifics in the coming weeks.
I often use the term Shipmate. You need to know that this is a team of endearment for me that represents a common bond across the entire Coast Guard family and all mission communities. There is no higher compliment in my opinion than being called a Shipmate and no better goal than being a good one.
Admiral Allen will continue his service as the National Incident Commander for the Deepwater Horizon Oil spill managing the overall federal response.
I am glad he accepted this last assignment as it will enable me to focus on the Coast Guard’s response, and serving you as Commandant of the Coast Guard. Admiral Allen is a true public servant and visionary, I thank him for his service.
I encourage all Coast Guard active duty, reserve, civilian, auxiliary, families and retirees to bookmark and initiate RSS feed from the senior leadership web page at www.USCG.mil/seniorleadership. We intend to use this location during our watch to post information and address subjects that are important to our service.
All standing orders remain in effect, set the watch and carry out the routine of the day.
Admiral Bob Papp