30 December 2008

Probably not stupid

One of my favorite authors, Seth Godin, had a post in September entitled "Probably not stupid" in which he proposes that:
Your difficult boss, customer, prospect, voter, student... probably not stupid, probably just uninformed. There's a huge difference.

Every person makes decisions based on their worldview and the data at hand. If two people have the same worldview and the same data, they'll make the same decision, every time (unless they're stupid.)
So, there are plenty of times where a lack of information leads to a bad decision. Plenty of times where an out of sync worldview leads to an out of sync decision.
I think this is a critical distinction to remember as we work with the boating public - we need to make our educational messages compelling enough that we change thier worldview in addition to making boating safety education information available. I think the most powerful way to do this is to make the message personal, tell people what we've seen and how they can prevent themselves from getting into a dangerous situation.

Guardian video

Don't miss this great video that reviews Coast Guard missions: it is time for an Auxiliary video (we'll be working on it).

29 December 2008

January Division member training - dewatering pump demo and fueling review

The Division member training on Saturday 10 JAN 2009 will focus on two items:

1) a fueling review for all Coxswain and Coxswain candidates
2) a demonstration and exercise using the standard Coast Guard dewatering pump which is required for all crew candidates

The training starts at 0830 on the training deck at Sector Portland. The uniform is ODU.

Update 20:52: Chris R reminds me that this should read 2009 not 2008. Thank Chris.

16 December 2008

AUXCOM qualification

All members,

Here is an update on the previous article on becoming AUXCOM qualified. Below is the e-mail I received concerning this change. Sorry about the confusion.


A couple of members have requested clarification on my previous message. Here is some background that should help:Over the past couple of months, some members have asked me how to become qualified to become radio facilities. Since the details for the new TC-PQS have not been completely worked out, I requested approval from our DSO-CM to allow members to qualify to become a radio facility by studying and passing the old AUXCOM test.I received approval on 13 December and sent an e-mail outlining the approved process.Now....Our DSO-13 has rechecked with national and been turned around. We are back to square one. So per the following orders who did NOT become AUXCOM qualified before 31 August 2008 will need to go through the TC-PQS, take the test and be reviewed by a QC. The QCs have not yet been trained but our DSO-CM is working on setting up some training for some of our members and me. Members who were AUXCOM qualified before 31 August 2008 have been "grandfathered in" and are not required to re-qualify.I hope this clarifies the situation. Please advise if you have questions.

Jim Price SO-CM-7

15 December 2008

AUXCOM qualification

UPDATE: This instruction has been changed, please see this updated post 

All members,

Anyone interested in becoming AUXCOM qualified, "NOW IS THE OPPORTUNITY". Because of the delays in working out the procedures and training to implement the new Telecommunications -Personal Qualification Standards (TC-PQS), Jim Price received approval from Frank McJunkins, our DSO-CM to qualify members as AUXCOM using the old study guide and test. The study guide and sample questions can be downloaded from:

When you have finished, you can contact one of our exam proctors to take the test.

Daren Lewis has add this web site: which is a power point presentation.

Paul Ploeger

07 December 2008

Division meeting update

Since we do not have a flotilla meeting this month I want to update you on a few items from the Division meeting:

Sector Portland:
  • Commander Proctor reminds everyone to be safe during the holiday season, on duty and off.
  • Operations will continue through the winter months by using appropriate risk management practices as we seek to fill the PPE gap
  • The issue of salvage insurance is still being explored
  • Please do not use any external mass storage devices (USB keys, external hard drives, etc.) in the Sector computers
  • The training deck should be available on schedule in January
  • We need vehicles that can tow the Auxiliary Emergency Command post.
Member training:
  • There is no scheduled member training in December
  • An eight hout Team Coordination Training (TCT) class will be held on 21 FEB 2009
  • The topic for the 10 JAN 2009 class is yet to be determined
  • The details for ICS210 are still being worked out. You can substitute ICS 300 to meet the 31MAR2009 deadline for coxswains and pilots.
Vessel examination:
  • Our Division target is 2009 VEs in 2009
Public Affairs
  • We need a Sportsman's Show coordinator for February

Help wanted: Citizen's Action Network coordinator(s)

Sector Portland is looking for members to assist with the coordination of the Citizen's Action Network in the Sector Portland AOR.
About CAN:
Become a Citizen’s Action Network member and help the U.S. Coast Guard save lives and property, prevent oil spills, and protect wildlife, all from the comfort of home.
The Northwest has an extensive amount of waterways and communities to protect.  The U.S. Coast Guard needs dependable and proactive volunteers to aid in keeping our waters safe and clean.
This program allows residents living near waterways to become associated with the Coast Guard and help conduct its missions.
The Coast Guard will call on Citizen’s Action Network members to help investigate cases such as rescue missions and pollution incidents, which puts volunteers right in the heart of the action.
The only requirements for participating are having access to a phone and a marine view from your home.
F76 members contact me if you can assist with this program either as a coordinator. If you want to participate as a member of CAN visit the CAN site or send me an email

05 December 2008

Getting underway: a guide to maximizing your time on the water

I joined the Auxiliary to do maritime search and rescue. Surface operations is still my passion, a passion I share with many of you. Occasionally I hear frustration from members about not getting underway as much as we'd like. Here are my strategies for increasing surface operations participation:

Get qualified: We work very hard to include crew trainees but members who are qualified crew are more simply more useful -- they count towards the minimum crew requirements. Actively working towards qualification and getting your qualification also shows a basic level of commitment. Qualifying as a coxswain makes you even more in demand since we have many member facility owners who are not coxswains.

Keep current: Once you are qualified make sure you stay qualified by doing your annual hours, completing the required workshops, and doing your triennial QE sessions. Try to get this done well before the deadlines, there is nothing like making the operations program scramble to get a mission together so you can get your hours in or get a QE session to gain you a certain unwanted reputation.

Be humbly competent: We operate in an environment that can be stressful and where everyone must pull their weight to ensure the safety of our team and the citizens who come under our care. Your qualification and currency maintenance ensures that you are minimally competent -- this is only the first step. Effective operators are constantly learning, training and increasing competence. At the same time they also recognize that no matter how much they know there are situations which arise that challenge their capabilities. There isn't room on Auxiliary facilities for people who "know it all" -- these folks break down team coordination (TCT) and cause mishaps. A special note: if you are an experienced mariner but new to the Auxiliary be aware that there is the traditional way and the Coast Guard way - you have almost as much to unlearn as a inexperienced mariner has to learn.

Consider weekdays and short notice call outs: While a significant portion of our operations happen on weekends and holidays when recreational traffic is high we do operate 24/7. If you have a schedule that allows flexibility during the week or for emergent cases please make it known.

Contribute a facility: Owning an Auxiliary facility puts you in the driver's seat, particularly once you are a coxswain. Facilities are the precious resource which allow us to operate. If you have a facility which is a good fit for our AOR, the missions we conduct and is regularly available you and your boat will be in demand.

If you don't have a facility pull your weight: If you don't own a facility recognize that it is an expensive and labor intensive endeavor. Be willing to show up early to help get ready for patrol and then make sure everything is cleaned up at the end of the day. If you have a regular berth (a boat you go out on a lot) it's worth volunteering to do maintenance and help out when the boat is in the yard.

Participate in other Auxiliary activities: The most active surface operators are involved in other facets of the organization - we are like any other group - you need to be around to be noticed.

Help run the organization as a staff member or unit leader: Beyond participation in other missions the next step is a staff or leadership position -- get involved in planning activities and you'll know what is happening and can make a place for yourself. For surface operators the operations, communications, member training, and information services (since you enter all the mission data) staff positions are a great platform for increasing participation in surface operations.

Be assertive: We all lead busy lives and no one is responsible for getting you on the water. Get involved, ask for access to the Patrol Order Management System (POMS) so you can look up who has missions scheduled, organize a mission yourself, get on the phone and call other active surface operators.

Be friendly: Finally, we associate voluntarily, maintaining a positive attitude and being easy to get along with are critical to getting invitations to participate. Fellowship is the glue of the Auxiliary - we want to spend our time among friends.

Please feel free to add your thoughts to the comments section and let me know if you have a dissenting view -- we'll get it posted.

UPDATE: Ken Babick our division vice commander and operations officer notes:
The reality is that many owner/operators have "regular" crew that they count on each and every patrol because they can be counted on in so many ways, available-competent-trustworthy-and easy and fun to be with.  Routine OPS are just that-- routine, but its when the rubber comes off the rim, that people have to be ready and prepared to make the mission a success.

26 November 2008

New Members: the Auxiliary eDirectory

As a new member once you have received your member number you will want to activate your eDirectory password. Doing so allows you to:

To activate your account you will need your member number, your zip code, and the password you want to use. Visit this site to start the process.

New Members: Tropical Blue Long uniform

In the choosing a first uniform post I suggested two uniforms as potential choices for your first uniform, the ODU and Tropical Blue, Long. The Tropical Blue Long, or Trops, uniform is the more formal of these uniforms and should be your first purchase if you plan to participate primarily in activities other than operations.

As with many of the choices you face as a new member choosing and aquiring your first uniform should be done in consultation with your mentor. This post will familiarize you with the terms and sources of supply so you can make the most of your conversation with your mentor.

Trops consist of a number of components, many of which are also worn with othe uniforms. Click here to see a full size version of the image to the right which describes the components of the uniform and the sources of each component.

Some of the components are general Coast Guard issue and are available at the Coast Guard Uniform Distribution Center (UDC) and at the Coast Guard Exchage at Sector Portland. The UDC is generally the cheapest source for the uniform items they carry.

  • Garrison cap (UDC or Sector Exchange)
  • Light blue short sleeve shirt (UDC or Sector Exchange)
  • SDB trousers (UDC or Sector Exchange)
  • Auxiliary belt and buckle (UDC)
  • Black dress shoes (UDC, Sector Exchange, or commercial plain toe black oxfords)

A few items are Auxiliary unique and are only available from the Auxiliary District Store. Some of the uniform items above are also available from the District store but the prices can be substantially higher.

  • Auxiliary garrison cap device
  • Auxiliary member insignia or officer device (1 for cap)
  • Auxiliary member of officer shoulder boards
  • Auxiliary belt and buckle
There are two items from the commercial market:
  • Black dress socks
  • V-neck white undershirt. The undershirt should not show.
Finally, you will need an Auxiliary name tag - the flotilla provides these to all new members.
The assembly and wear, as well as various options, of the Trops uniform can be found in Chapter 10 of the Auxiliary Manual  

24 November 2008

AUXAIR Annual Training Weekend 2009

76 members involved or interested in AUXAIR should be aware of the following announcement. Mark your calendars now.


For details on participation see Gary Nepple.

12 November 2008

New members: Choosing a first uniform

Purchasing your first USCG Auxiliary uniform is a key milestone in becoming an Auxiliarist. The uniform identifies you as an Auxiliarist to the public and creates a sense of shared purpose with your fellow members.
Over time most members gather a fairly wide range of uniform items that are combined into various uniform ensembles. As a new member we encourage you to keep things simple and start with either the Operational Dress Uniform (ODU) or the Tropical Blue, Long uniform (usually called “Trops” or Tropical Blue). Eventually you will want both uniforms since owning these two uniforms, along with civilian clothing appropriate to formal occasions, will allow you to participate in any Auxiliary event.
Which uniform you choose is likely most influenced by your initial interests. If you plan on focusing on surface operations (boat crew) or vessel exams I suggest the Operational Dress Uniform (ODU). If you are more interested in teaching and public affairs I suggest Tropical Blue, Long.
A complete Tropical Blue, Long uniform including dress shoes ($60) costs around $175
A complete Operational Dress Uniform including boots ($60) costs around $145
We often have some donated uniform items available that can reduce this initial outlay.
Your mentor will guide you through the process of procuring the appropriate uniform items and we’ll discuss the elements of each uniform and proper wear in future posts.

08 November 2008

Qualifications: Becoming an Auxiliary Instructor

One of the most rewarding opportunities in the Auxiliary is teaching others about recreational boating safety (RBS). To teach our public classes you need to be a qualified instructor (IT) or candidate for IT status.

Most Auxiliary qualifications, of which the instructor qualification (IT) is one, are moving to the standard for Coast Guard qualifications the Performance Qualification System (PQS). A PQS is a set of tasks and other requirements to gain a qualification. Once you have been qualified many qualifications require annual currency maintenance, which will be discussed in future posts.

How do you become an instructor?

1. You read/study the Instructor Development Course (IDC) text  found here. Note a study guide for the course can be found here .

2. You take the online IDC test at the Auxiliary National Testing Center (NTC) and pass with a score of 90% or better. Print out the email the NTC sends and keep it. (You will need to sign in and get a pasword for the NTC using your Auxiliary eDirectory password. If you don't have an eDirectory password visit the eDirectory and set one up.)

3. The student is assigned a mentor that is a currently qualified Instructor and the mentor takes the student through 19 Tasks and signs off that the student knows and understands the tasks. (IDC appendix B-4 )

4. The student then presents a 10-30 minute lesson and a 1-2 hour lesson. The mentor evaluates the presentations using the "Instructor Qualification Check List" and then the "Instructor Evaluation Sheet" (appendix C-3 thru C-7 )

4. The mentor and the Flotilla Commander then certify the process by completing the "Certification of Instructor" form on appendix B-6 .

5. The  Flotilla Commander will then submit the "Certification of Instructor form" and a copy of the email response showing the score on the test and that the member passed by 90% to the District Staff Officer for Public Education (DSO-PE) for review. The DSO-PE will then recommend to the DIRAUX that the member be qualified.

6. Your certificate and ribbon will be sent to your FC for presentation at the next Flotilla meeting.

05 November 2008

Operations: Kokatat dry suit test required

A few of you have a Kokatat dry suit (see the photo). We've been directed to have each member with this type of dry suit test the suit to assure it is working properly and does not leak. We have a form that must be completed for each Kokatat dry suit. If you have one of these suits please contact me to arrange a testing time. The suit must be worn in the water for 15 minutes with a Type III PFD and the layer 1 and layer 2 thermal protection.
In order to facilitate this process the Division has arranged a testing session at the Monarch Hotel pool on Sunday 09NOV2008 at 1400 hours.
Please bring your dry suit, your Type III PFD, your thermal layers, a change of clothes and a large garbage bag to transport your wet gear after the test - we don't want to drip water in the lobby.
Address: 12566 SE 93rd Avenue, Portland/Clackamas, Oregon 97015

Vancouver Veterans Parade - Saturday November 8th

Division 7 will be participating in the Vancouver Veterans Parade on Saturday, November 8th. All Auxiliarists are encouraged to participate.

We will assemble at Crosley Bowl (2400 E. Evergreen BLVD, Vancouver WA, 98661). All Coast Guard units need to be in place by 0930 and the parade will commence at 1100.

The uniform of the day is ODU and the uniform is required for this event. There is currently a 70% chance of rain. Please be prepared for rain and remember that only uniform outwear should be worn.

22 October 2008

The materials process... getting what you need to do your job

The Coast Guard Auxiliary National Supply Center (ANSC) provides the majority of our public education materials, our manuals, our training materials, and our government postage. Many members will need some of these materials for vessel exams, classes, public booths, and your own training. I'd encourage each 76 member to review the ANSC catalog and let our FSO-MA, Ron, know what you need. The current catalog can be found here:

Please remember that only Ron and I may place orders so please coordinate your materials orders with Ron.

Real time operational photography

As some of you know I’ve been heavily engaged in the Coast Guard’s approach to Web 2.0 and social media. On Friday, 17 October, the Commandant spoke to Federal News Radio and said:
How much applicability is there regarding this type of technology and aggregation of social behavior to actual operations in the Coast Guard? If you think about video and imagery that can be translated immediately to blog sites and Web sites, the potential implications for how we might monitor a search and rescue case in the future -- if we're able to put that kind of technology out on our small boats is pretty fantastic if you think about it. - ADM Allen on Federal News Radio
Inspired, I called up Ken Babick and got a crew spot on a training mission on Saturday, and started working out how to use my iPhone to post images to the web while underway. Within an hour I had a process prototyped and at 10am Saturday morning we hit the water and started taking photos. These photos were then uploaded in real time and within 90 seconds – 2 minutes were available on the web as blog posts.
The blog can be seen here:

The process I used is as follows:
  1. Turn on the iPhone
  2. Load the photo application
  3. Take a photo
  4. Decide if it should be uploaded
  5. Choose "Email" from the photo application which opens the email application
  6. Choose the Flickr address from contacts and send the email
Key learnings from the test:
  1. The process worked, it took about 90 seconds to two minutes from turning on the iPhone until I was able to confirm the photo had appeared on the blog.
  2. The first minute of this time my full attention was on the iPhone, I wasn't really focused on doing anything else, situational awareness was significantly lowered (we intentionally put me on the target vessel where I was extra crew).
  3. A custom application would be really nice, on where I could shoot the photo and then press one button to accept it and send.
  4. The GPS coordinates were very accurate except for 3 cases (15%) where the locations were off by up to a mile: 
  5. The email process I used would allow me to add notes but I did not do so. Again a custom application would be nice, one that would allow you to preset the facility number, coxswain name, order number, email addresses to send to (Command Center, Intel, the Aux Ops officer) etc. for inclusion in the email.
  6. This is all dependent on 3G or EDGE network connectivity so it is a near shore approach. The iPhone will store images with geodata for uploading latter but this takes away from the benefits of near real time imaging.
Obviously there are some issues regarding security and privacy to be worked out but overall this was a success. Over the winter we’ll be experimenting more. If you’ve used a camera phone during operations to send images I’d love to hear about your experiences.

cgblogtest's items Go to cgblogtest's photostream

19 October 2008

Surface operations: the cold water season is upon us

The average water temperatures on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers has fallen below 60 degrees F and we are now back in our cold weather PPE. Please make sure you have all your winter PPE and that it is in good condition.

15 October 2008

Dues time

If you have not already done so please send your dues to the FSO-FN.

11 October 2008

Welcome Paul!

Paul, our newly appointed FSO-VE, is the first to take up my invitation and post to the Spirit blog. I hope he is the first of many. Since this whole blogging initiative can be intimidating I've put together the first of a series of tutorials that are posted at the USCG Pacific Northwest blog:

Creating a blog (I've already done this step for our blog)
A simple post
Adding photos from Flickr

F76 members, let me know when you are ready to participate and I'll send you an invite. I'm happy to walk you through all the steps of signing up and your first few posts.

10 October 2008

Safety Notice from Orion Safety Products

Orion Safety Products has uncovered a potential problem with their Sky blazer product. Although a product recall has not been instituted they are recommending that all retailers, distributors and dealers remove the Sky blazer product from their shelves and to discontinue sale of this product to the market place at this time. For more details visit the Orion web site at

09 October 2008

Keep an eye on the ATONs

I was on patrol a week ago Sunday with Ken Babick and we came across the 1 buoy on the Willamette. It had obviously been hit buy a white boat. Just a reminder that another thing we do on our Marine Observation Mission (MOM) patrols is keep an eye on the Aids to Navigation (ATONs) looking for:

  • damage 
  • lights not functioning
  • a buoy out of position, or
  • a missing ATON

If you are a boater please do not tie off to a buoy or other aid. If you strike an aid please call it in to the nearest Coast Guard unit. Buoys, daymarks and other aids are fairly tough but they can be damaged or moved out of position. An out of position aid, a missing aid, or an aid with a failed light can be a serious danger to navigation and can put your fellow boaters at risk.

USCG Meritorious Team Commendation for Rose Festival 2008

Congratulations to the 16 members of Flotilla 76  and all of our shipmates, Active Duty, Reserve and Auxiliary, who earned the Meritorious Team Commendation for their participation in the Portland Rose Festival 2008 Fleet Week.

The Auxiliary put in almost 2,300 hours on the water, in the air, and in the command center this year.  The Fleet Week events are, by far, our largest, most complex activity. Once again our performance has been recognized as exemplary.

Blogger basics: Your first post

I've put together a very brief video showing you how easy it is to post to the Spirit of 76 blog once you have an account. If you are a member of the Flotilla (or anyone in the Division) who would like to post please send me an email.

So, after you are set up to post, here is the basic process:

I apologize for the poor audio quality, my good microphone is broken, we'll do better in the future.

In future videos I'll show you how to add photos, embed video, use block quotes, and other formatting options.

08 October 2008

Great Coast Guard Post: What to expect in a boarding

The D13 blog has a great post by an experienced USCG boarding officer. This is a must read for our Vessel Examiners and is an excellent piece of public education.

Thank you!

Everyone, Thanks for a great meeting and the great fellowship this evening. I'm proud to count myself in your company.

PPE: We need your drysuit, life jacket and survival equipment requests

With the cooling river temperatures it is time to check your Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). If you are in surface operations, are a current trainee, or plan to participate this winter please review the following list:

  • Dry suit
  • Type III Life Vest
  • Survival vest
  • Knife
  • Whistle
  • Mirror
  • Strobe light
  • Gear bag

If you do not have all of the items in the list please let me know. We'll do our best to equip you based on availability from District. I will need sizes if you need a life vest and/or a dry suit, please check this table from Mustang Survival:

We're usually in our dry suits until late May or early June. Let's get properly equipped and have safe winter and spring operations.

07 October 2008

Member Training - 1 hour TCT Refresher

Prudent sailors have exhibited and human factors researchers have described seven critical skills that reduce the potential for human error-induced mishaps. These skills are leadership, mission analysis, adaptability and flexibility, situational awareness, decision making, communication and assertiveness. Collectively, they are titled “Team Coordination.” Within these skills are important processes that serve to control safety risks and improve team performance. The processes are risk management, crew briefing and crew debriefing. TCT reinforces these processes and makes the student aware of both effective and ineffective behaviors. Diagnostic tools and corrective strategies are taught. Through discussion, case study, class exercise and/or role-play, students gain an understanding of these skills and how best to apply them. - COMMANDANT INSTRUCTION 1541.1

Prevention of mishaps is a key responsibility of everyone wearing Coast Guard blue. We cannot be Semper Paratus if our facilities are damaged or our people are injured. We cannot save lives when we become victims ourselves.
Every five years all operators are required to complete the full 8 hour team coordination training course and there is a recent requirement in the last few years to take a one hour refresher every year. Even if you do not participate in operations I encourage you to take advantage of the full TCT and the refresher on a regular basis. We have outstanding instructors for the full TCT and you'll learn skill that you will find useful in all aspects of your lives.
The TCT refresher will be offered on  18OCT08 at Sector Portland, 0830 and the uniform is ODUs.

06 October 2008

Flotilla meeting reminder - Wednesday evening 1900

We have a meeting on Wednesday 08OCT08 at 1900hrs at Sector Portland.

Just a reminder, please remember the gate rules.

1. If the gate guard is on duty you must stop and show your ID. Please no rolling stops.

2. When arriving or leaving the base any time the gate is unattended you must stop and allow the gate to close completely before you drive away. This applies to both arrival and departure from the base when there is no gate guard. The safety and security of our shipmates is our responsibility, leaving with the gate open and unattended puts the base at risk.

On departure if there is another car behind you it is permissible to clear the gate and depart the car to the rear must assure the gate closes.

If there is a car waiting to enter they must wait.

On entry you may never clear the gate for a vehicle behind you unless the gate reopens. Usually the gate will start to close and then reopen, you may then proceed.

05 October 2008

Winter Uniforms are Authorized

01 October brings in the season of winter uniforms which, for the most part, means the Winter Dress Blue is authorized.

The Winter Dress Blue uniform is my favorite uniform as it is both formal and traditional while being 100% Coast Guard blue.

For our newer members the Winter Dress Blue is similar to Tropical Blue Long but substitutes the CPO shirt (found here at the UDC , scroll to the bottom) for the light blue shirt and adds the USCG tie (found here at the UDC )

03 October 2008

USCG approach to new media in action

On Monday I suggested you check out iCommandat, ADM Allen's blog, to see how social media is going to be used to communicate about the Coast Guard.

On Wednesday, I read a post about the Deployable Operations Group (the DOG) and had a question about the presentation. I posted a comment/question to the blog:

Any chance we can get someone to explain the shift from "Qualify = Certify" to "Certify - Qualify - Train" as described on the third slide?

Thank you,
October 1, 2008 9:18 PM
On Thursday, I got a reply:
This is Admiral Allen trying the comment mode on this thread.
One of the fundamental changes we are trying to make with the DOG and FORCECOM is to make sure that we are prepared to execute the mission.

For years, and this goes back to when I was a CO afloat, we took time out of our normal operations to train. In my era it was REFTRA. The key concept now is that we need to move beyond "qualification equals certification to operate" to the notion that we certify basic entry level skills, insure we are qualified to operate and then create superior operational capability through training.

RDML Atkin is trying to start a new conversation regarding how we train, equip, and provide. It is a good conversation to have and I applaud what he has done.
October 2, 2008 3:59 PM:
This is so cool, and while we cannot expect the Commandant to respond to every question, we do have the opportunity participate in his thinking and help build a more effective Coast Guard.
What is the lesson? Dig into social media, start reading, start commenting, and start posting. 

01 October 2008


The D13 Auxiliary Blog has posted 3 dates for the AUX-10 C-School:

01/24/2009 in Alameda
03/20/2009 in Alameda
06/05/2009 CG Academy

The flotilla could really use another AUXDATA qualified member and this is the place to do it.

From the C-School Portal:

This program is designed to provide district, division and flotilla information systems personnel with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to exercise responsibility for all matters pertaining to the collection, recording, and forwarding of the flotilla’s AUXDATA information, and keep members informed of all developments in this area.  Report generation and creation of ad-hoc queries using AUXINFO will be reviewed using in-depth classroom hands on exercises.

27 September 2008

ODU Availability at the Sector Portland Exchange

Please be aware that the Operational Dress Uniform (ODU) may not be available at the Sector Portland exchange for some period of time.

All current ODUs are being returned to the Uniform Distribution Center (UDC) in preparation for the issuance of the new un-tucked ODU to the exchanges. See the ALCOAST on this issue.

While this ALCOAST seems to indicate that Auxiliarists can order the un-tucked ODU from the UDC but when you visit the UDC you will see that only active duty and reserve members can preorder. I’d ask that you wait until the UDC website indicates that the un-tucked ODU is available to Auxiliarists to order, the UDC staff is likely working long shifts making this transition.

The “old” ODU is available for order from the UDC, sizes may be limited.

ADM Allen introduces social media initiative

Know it's cold

This year we've been making a major push in the Recreational Boating Safety community to educate about the risks posed by cold water. This goes well beyond our traditional emphasis on hypothermia with a particular focus on what happens in the first few minutes of cold water exposure. I've uploaded a presentation on cold water issues that I've been working on to SlideShare. Comments welcome.

This post authored by Daren Originally appeared on