100 days: We want to hear from you

Today marks my 100th day as Commandant. Upon becoming Commandant, I shared my guiding principles – Service to Nation, Duty to People and Commitment to Excellence – and asked each of you to infuse these principles into your unique role in the Service. As I’ve traveled with, and worked alongside, the Vice Commandant and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard over the past 100 days, I have seen firsthand the embodiment of these guiding principles.

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Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft speaks with the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Paul Clark. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.
Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Zukunft speaks with the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Paul Clark. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.

Written by Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft.

Today marks my 100th day as Commandant. Upon becoming Commandant, I shared my guiding principles – Service to Nation, Duty to People and Commitment to Excellence – and asked each of you to infuse these principles into your unique role in the Service. As I’ve traveled with, and worked alongside, the Vice Commandant and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard over the past 100 days, I have seen firsthand the embodiment of these guiding principles.

On our Service’s 224th birthday, the Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard Vice Adm. Neffenger spoke with Petty Officer 3rd Class Samuel Guess, who exhibits superior performance as a member of Coast Guard Cutter Active’s auxiliary machinery division. While his professional skills are impressive, it is his leadership that underscores his Service to Nation and earned him the Fireman First Class Paul Clark Boat Forces Engineering Award.

Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard Vice Adm. Peter Neffenger speaks at a Women's Leadership Initiative event. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.
Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard Vice Adm. Neffenger speaks at a Women’s Leadership Initiative event. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.

Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Cantrell recognized Seaman Ashly Norton who embodies Duty to People. As one of the most junior people at TISCOM, Seaman Norton demonstrates proficiency in her performance and moves beyond impacting her unit to influencing the schools, programs and teams in her community.

Last week, I saw Commitment to Excellence when I visited the Coast Guard’s “Force from Above” at Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron and met Petty Officer 3rd Class Gary Rohleder. He developed a portable satellite internet and phone system needed to deploy HITRON assets on allied naval vessels. His technical excellence and innovative thinking were integral in the joint interdiction of $40 million worth of cocaine.

These three members personified the guiding principles in their own unique ways, just as we know thousands more have across the U.S. Coast Guard. And that’s where the second part of taking stock of the first 100 days comes in – you.

What’s on your mind?

Let’s reflect on these first 100 days together. The Vice Commandant, Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard and I invite you to submit questions for us to answer in an All Hands post. What would you like to know about our first 100 days? What are you seeing at your unit over these past 100 days? What are the challenges that you see for our Service as we confront new and emerging threats?

Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Steven Cantrell speaks at an All Hands  in Miami. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.
Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Cantrell speaks at an All Hands in Miami. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.

We encourage you all to submit questions. We will ensure we cover a wide range of what is on the mind of Coast Guard men and women serving around the globe in our responses.

We look forward to examining “The first 100 days” with you.

Semper Paratus.

Editor’s note: To submit questions to the Commandant, Vice Commandant and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard, please leave your question in the comments below. Be sure to include your name, rank and unit. You may also submit your question via the “submit ideas” form here on All Hands or by sending an email directly to socialmedia@uscg.mil. Questions must be received before close of business Sept. 10, 2014, to be considered.

1 comments on “100 days: We want to hear from you”

  1. Good Day Admiral, Master Chief,
    My question is about leadership and advancement. While looking at the USCG’s 28 leadership competencies, it is notable that the majority of them (more than 22) emphasize emotional intelligence in a person to be successful. However our advancement system and training systems (OER, Enlisted Marks, CGBI, CG Learning) are increasingly becoming numbers and knowledge driven that tend to overlook the “human” element. The bulk of our qualification system still successfully uses oral boards to determine if a person possesses the right mix of emotional intelligence and knowledge. Is there any thoughts to overhauling our advancement system at key ranks to include actual face to face boards like many other military services have done? If not, are there any changes in the current advancement system (officers and enlisted) that are envisioned for the future?
    V/R
    CWO Todd Wardwell
    USCG Sector South East New England

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