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News online for Encinitas, Calif.

North Coast Current

News online for Encinitas, Calif.

North Coast Current

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SDMAC Welcomes Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard to Podium

Dennis+Dubard+and+Admiral+Paul+Zukunft%2C+25th+Commandant+of+the+U.S.+Coast+Guard
Dennis Dubard and Admiral Paul Zukunft, 25th Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard

San Diego CA— Yesterday, Friday, July 28th, the San Diego Military Advisory Council (SDMAC) held a private, member’s only breakfast at the Admiral Kidd Catering and Conference Center onboard Naval Base Point Loma featuring distinguished speaker Admiral Paul Zukunft, Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard. There were approximately 100 guests at the event. Those in attendance included RADM Jens Nykwist, Chief of Staff, Royal Swedish Navy, Swedish Armed Forces, VADM Nora Tyson, USN, Commander 3rd Fleet, County Supervisor Greg Cox, RDML Paul Pearigen, MC, USN, Commander, Navy Medicine West, RDML Yancy Lindsey, USN, Commander Navy Region Southwest, Col Ian Clark, USMC, Commanding Officer, Marine Corps Air Station Camp Pendleton, and CAPT Joe Buzzella, Commanding Officer, Coast Guard Sector San Diego/Captain of the Port.
“We are honored and delighted to have had Admiral Zukunft, USCG, Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, address our members this morning. It is not often we have one of our military service chiefs on our podium,” said Randy Bogle, Executive Director of SDMAC. “The fact San Diego is now a Coast Guard City and the Coast Guard’s birthday is next month makes this visit especially meaningful. We are very grateful for the Admiral taking time out of his busy schedule to be with us today.”
Admiral Zukunft is the 25th Commandant and spoke on a range of topics including budget, Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) as it pertains to cyber-security, the importance of human capital, and protecting our natural resources. He spoke at length about the Arctic Coast Guard Forum, comprised of leaders representing Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and the Russian Federation. As retreating ice opens access for shipping along Arctic routes, Admiral Zukunft expressed the need for international cooperation. The Forum recently signed a joint statement in March of 2017 for cooperation on emergency maritime response and combined operations in the high northern seas.
The Admiral’s speech was followed by a question and answer session that allowed industry leaders and members of the SDMAC community to inquire about concerns specific to the San Diego region, including the positive relationship between Coast Guard, Border Patrol, and local law enforcement.
This visit comes on the heels of San Diego being officially named the 21st Coast Guard City on February 23rd, 2017. San Diego is the largest metropolis to receive the designation which requires approval from Congress.
Admiral Paul Zukunft assumed the duties of the 25th Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard on May 30, 2014. He leads the largest component of the Department of Homeland Security, composed of 88,000 personnel including active duty, reserve, civilian and volunteer Auxiliarists.
Prior to this, Admiral Zukunft served as Commander, Coast Guard Pacific Area, where he was operational commander for all U.S. Coast Guard missions in an area encompassing more than 74 million square miles and provided mission support to the Department of Defense and Combatant Commanders. Other Flag assignments include Commander of the Eleventh Coast Guard District and Director, Joint Interagency Task Force West, where he served as executive agent to United States Pacific Command for combating Transnational Criminal Organizations in the Asia-Pacific Region.
In 2010, Admiral Zukunft served as the Federal On-Scene Coordinator for the Deepwater Horizon Spill of National Significance where he directed more than 47,000 responders, 6,500 vessels and 120 aircraft during the largest oil spill in U.S. history. His senior staff assignments included Chief of Operations, Coast Guard Pacific Area and Chief of Operations Oversight, Coast Guard Atlantic Area where he directly supervised all major cutter operations in the Atlantic and Pacific theaters. He also served as Chief of Staff, at the Fourteenth Coast Guard District in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Admiral Zukunft has commanded six units and served extensively in the cutter fleet where he commanded the cutters Cape Upright, Harriet Lane, and Rush.
A native of North Branford, Connecticut, Admiral Zukunft graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 1977 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Government; from Webster University in 1988 with a Master of Arts degree in Management; and from the U.S. Naval War College in 1997 with a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies. He is a graduate of the Asia Pacific Center for Strategic Studies Executive Seminar and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government National Preparedness Leadership Initiative course.
His personal awards include both the Department of Homeland Security and Coast Guard Distinguished Service Medals, Defense Superior Service Medal, three Legions of Merit and five Meritorious Service Medals with “O” device among others.


About SDMAC

SDMAC advances the partnership among the military, our elected officials, civic leaders, and the business community to enhance the understanding of military’s many contributions to the San Diego region. Annually, SDMAC releases its military economic impact study, highlighting the significant economic benefits San Diego receives from the defense and military communities.

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SDMAC Welcomes Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard to Podium