Coast Guard Cutter Campbell holds change of command

1st Coast Guard District NewsKITTERY, Maine — U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Campbell held a change of command ceremony July 22, 2011 at 10 a.m. on the pier of the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

Vice Adm. Robert Parker, commander Coast Guard Atlantic Area, presided over the ceremony.

Campbell’s outgoing commanding officer, Cmdr. Scott Clendenin of Springfield, Penn., will be assigned to the Federal Executive Fellowship at the Brookings Institution, in Washington D.C.

Cmdr. Kurt Virkaitis of Morrisville, N.Y., assumed command of Campbell. Virkaitis previously served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Office of Net Assessment.

During Clendenin’s tenure as commanding officer,the cutter Campbell conducted seven multi-mission patrols, spanning from the North Atlantic to the Caribbean Sea, in which Campbell safely prosecuted over 500 flight evolutions, 58 law enforcement boardings, and 12 “go-fast” vessel chases. Campbell seized nearly 4,000 pounds of cocaine with an estimated street value of $48.1 million, arrested eight narcotics smugglers, two migrant smugglers, recovered a stolen U.S. vessel, cited three fishing vessels and terminated a fishing voyage. Over the course of these patrols, Campbell lead the way with two first-time International Passing Exercises with Colombian, Nicaraguan, and Panamanian forces, as well as four subsequent international operations that enhanced combined communications and interoperability and led to subsequent multi-national, multi-ton narcotics seizures by other U.S. assets. Campbell also completed a large dry-dock and maintenance period greatly improving materiel and engineering readiness.

Campbell achieved excellence awards in Engineering, Operations, Weapons, and Seamanship during the 2010 Afloat Training Group Tailored Shipboard Training Availability.

Campbell is a 270-foot cutter home ported in Kittery, Maine. Campbell’s primary missions include maritime law enforcement, migrant operations, search and rescue and drug interdiction.

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