U.S. Coast Guard Rear Adm. Joseph A. Servidio, the 11th District commander, visited Coast Guard Station Crescent City on July 16.
This was Servidio's first visit to Crescent City with Master Chief Petty Officer Dawn Stephens, the 11th District Command master chief.
Servidio's office is located on Coast Guard Island in Alameda. From this location he and his staff lead members of the 11th District in keeping waters safe for the states of California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah and the offshore waters of Mexico and Central America down to South America.
During Servidio's visit, he spoke to a group of 19 Coast Guard active duty, Coast Guard Auxiliary and civilian personnel.
"I know your challenges here in the north are great and they are much greater than in other areas," Servidio said.
He also recognized two Coast Guard members during his visit, presenting them with commendation "coins." Fireman Lincoln Foster and Seaman James Hanson were recognized for their devotion to duties aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Dorado.
After Servidio recognized the two Dorado crewmembers, he talked about his understating and appreciation for what members do in the Crescent City area.
"Your search and rescue missions and educational programs here in Crescent City are responsible for saving numerous lives and preventing unforeseen boating disasters," Servidio said.
He commended northern District 11's Auxiliary Commander Thomas O'Connor and boat examiner Bev Noll for their diligent efforts to prevent accidents via their vessel exam programs and fishing fleet outreach.
Servidio recognized the fact that the Coast Guard can't meet its mission requirements without the auxiliaries' volunteers. "The auxiliary is a vital part of the Coast Guard team."
He said that Coast Guard members' missions, including fisheries and search and rescue, are difficult and trying.
"The margin for error is very small," Servidio said. "Every day the Coast Guard needs to be better than the day before; you'll need to be better tomorrow just to keep up with the pace of change."
The Coast Guard needs to follow three commandant directives:
First, service to the nation.
"Remember, it is a privilege to serve, not a right," Servidio said.
Second, duty to people. The admiral stressed that shipmates need to look out for each other and also the public "on and off-duty," he said.
"We need to always treat each person with respect," Servidio said.
Lastly, all personnel need to commit to excellence.
"Our missions are getting more complex," Servidio said. "We need to make sure we are always on our 'A' game."