Happy 226th Birthday Coast Guard!

When he founded the Coast Guard 226 years ago, even a visionary like Alexander Hamilton could have hardly imagined the service we are today. Consistent with our maritime roots, yet evolved to address increasingly complex threats, today’s Coast Guard is a strategically focused force that provides a unique and powerful value to our Nation. I’m proud to see you answer the call on a daily basis.

Coast Guard Cutter Boutwell transits Stephens Passage in southeast Alaska. U.S Coast Guard photo by Lt. James "Bobby" Miller.

Commandant’s Reading List – Highliners

When one reads or hears about the Alaskan fishing industry, thoughts go to the reality television programs that show the dangers on the high seas. Visually, the viewer may experience treacherous conditions, frigid waters and killer seas. That’s probably the only way they relate to this industry. William B. McCloskey, Jr. has presented another approach to experience the action, adventure and terror that Mother Nature can unleash at a moment’s notice.

From the Commandant: Our Oath

This past May, I presided over a citizenship ceremony at Faneuil Hall, Boston’s historic meeting place where our founders debated issues, argued the merits of public spending, and carried out free elections of leaders – beholden to the people – at a time when that was anything but normal. To this day, Faneuil Hall stands as the “Cradle of Liberty.”

Commandant’s Reading List Review – Unbroken

Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand, is an exemplary book about World War II which will immediately captivate the interest of any reader, history buff or not. This great generation of heroes is now passing on, and with them passes the wealth of knowledge and first-hand experience that comes only from true sacrifice.


Leadership in a 21st Century Coast Guard

Over the past few weeks, Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft met with Coast Guard members to talk about his leadership principles: know your purpose, standards matter, trust and empower your people, and take decisive action.

Admiral Woodward commanded flagship HMS Hermes leaving for the war April 5, 1982.

Commandant’s Reading List – One Hundred Days: The Memoirs of the Falklands Battle Group Commander

One Hundred Days covers the British response to Argentina’s invasion of the Falkland Islands on April 2,1982. Many in the Coast Guard today have only a vague recollection of these events as they occurred before their time, in another hemisphere and primarily involved other countries. Despite this, the book provides an absorbing look at a major world event that unfolded with U.S. support. And while the book provides an overview of Sandy Woodward’s rise through the Royal Navy from a young cadet to Admiral, the focus is very much on his role as the Commander Task Group for Operation Corporate in the south Atlantic. Adm. Woodward brings you along with him, demonstrating leadership throughout those one hundred days with excerpts and sketches from his diary.

Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft meets with U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Camille Nichols, director of the Department of Defense Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office, and U.S. Coast Guard Rear Adm. Erica Schwartz, director of Health, Safety and Work-Life. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.

Our Duty to People: Building a culture of respect

Each year, the Coast Guard joins in the national recognition of Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. Over the past several years, we have developed a deeper understanding of what it means to stand up to sexual assault and say, “Not in my Coast Guard!”


The 2016 State of the Coast Guard Address

On Tuesday, our Commandant, Adm. Paul Zukunft, shared your story with stakeholders from across the Nation and around the world at his second State of the Coast Guard Address. His remarks showcased you – the 41,000 active duty, 7,000 reserve, 8,500 civilian and 30,000 Auxiliary who are America’s Coast Guard. You are why the Coast Guard is Semper Paratus.

Aboard C130

Additional books selected for Commandant’s reading list

At the start of the year, I shared my reading list as a reference for your continued reflection on leadership. In sharing my list, I also asked for your recommendations. After looking through the selections – from leadership case studies of today to history’s best sea stories – I was encouraged by the relevant subject matter you are exploring and I will include the following on my 2016 list.

Lt. Jeremy Rodrigues, a U.S. Coast Guard Reserve member, cradles his newborn son's feet in his hands during their first meeting at the San Diego International Airport, Dec. 12,2012. Rodrigues recently returned after a 7-month deployment to the Middle East with the U.S. Navy's Coastal Riverine Squadron Eleven. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Connie Gawrelli.

From the Commandant: Changes to paid maternity leave policy

The Coast Guard will increase paid maternity leave from six weeks to up to 12 weeks. This welcomed policy change is effective immediately and was carefully orchestrated with our sister Armed Services to ensure our military mothers can welcome the newest members of our Coast Guard family into their homes. Women have proudly served in our Coast Guard since 1978, and this policy change reflects their tremendous Service to Nation and embodies our Duty to People.

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