HONOLULU — Capt. Steven P. Wittrock relieved Capt. AlDante Vinciguerra as the Coast Guard Cutter Sherman commanding officer during a change of command ceremony at Base Honolulu, Friday.
Wittrock most recently served as chief of the Office of Strategic Analysis at Coast Guard Headquarters.
Previously, Wittrock served aboard five cutters, including three tours as commanding officer. Wittrock’s other assignments include serving as an instructor at the Coast Guard Academy and a program reviewer at the Office of Budget and Programs at Coast Guard Headquarters.
Wittrock’s military awards include three Meritorious Service Medals, five Coast Guard Commendation Medals, the Coast Guard 9-11 Medal, Coast Guard Achievement Medal, and a Commandant’s Letter of Commendation.
He graduated from the United States Coast Guard Academy in 1992 with a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering. In 1997, Wittrock earned a master’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Illinois.
“I’m honored to assume command of Sherman and lead this outstanding crew as we continue to complete Coast Guard missions throughout the Pacific Area,” said Wittrock, incoming commanding officer.
Vice Adm. Charles W. Ray, commander, Pacific Area and Defense Forces West, presided over the ceremony.
Vinciguerra assumed command of Sherman in February 2015 after decommissioning the Coast Guard Cutter Rush. He will serve as chief of response for the 7th Coast Guard District in Miami.
“I consider myself one of the luckiest people in the Coast Guard,” said Vinciguerra. “I had the honor of commanding both Rush and Sherman which provided me the opportunity to work with an exceptional crew on a beautiful island.”
The change of command ceremony is a time-honored tradition and formal ritual conducted before the assembled company of a command to confirm to the men and women of the unit that the authority of command is maintained. The ceremony is a transfer of total responsibility, authority and accountability from one individual to another.
Sherman’s crew performs missions in all corners of the Pacific including defense operations, search and rescue, fisheries law enforcement, drug and migrant interdiction, joint interagency task force operations, and international engagement operations. The area of responsibility encompasses more than 12.2 million square miles in the Central and Western Pacific Ocean.