First Coast Guard District leaders honor top performing enlisted members

Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Damien Renzi, recently selected as the 1st Coast Guard District Enlisted Person of the Year, is recognized at a luncheon held in his honor at Coast Guard Base Boston, April 2, 2015. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Aux. Chris Scott)

Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Damien Renzi is recognized at Coast Guard Base Boston, April 2, 2015. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Aux. Chris Scott)

BOSTON — Coast Guard leaders and distinguished guests joined together April 2, 2015, to recognize and honor 26 outstanding enlisted members at the 17th annual 1st District Enlisted Person of the Year award luncheon at Coast Guard Base Boston.

The EPOY nomination is reserved exclusively for enlisted personnel who sustain high standards of excellence and professionalism. Nominees reflect the spirit of pride, professionalism, and dedication. Each demonstrated exceptional performance throughout the year in areas such as leadership, technical proficiency, personal and work ethics, Coast Guard knowledge, uniform appearance, and military bearing.

Of the 26 that were nominated by various units throughout the 1st District, two were selected as the Enlisted Person of the Year and the Reserve Enlisted Person of the Year.

The winners were:

Petty Officer 2nd Class Damien Renzi, Coast Guard Sector Boston (active duty)

Petty Officer 1st Class Andrew Lieberwirth, Coast Guard Sector Boston (reserve)

Active duty nominees were:

Petty Officer 1st Class Adam Lorentz, Coast Guard Aids-to-Navigation Team Moriches, N.Y.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jose Castro, Coast Guard Cutter Katherine Walker, Bayonne, N.J.

Petty Officer 1st Class Lee Rohlfing, Coast Guard Sector New York

Petty Officer 1st Class James Zerinskas, Coast Guard Cutter Reliance, Kittery, Maine

Petty Officer 1st Class David Gustafson, Coast Guard Port Security Unit 301, Bourne, Mass.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Geoffrey Haywood, Coast Guard Cutter Sitkinak, Bayonne, N.J.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jeff Daily, Coast Guard Cutter Willow, Newport, R.I.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Edward Hodges, Coast Guard Sector Northern New England, Portland, Maine

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jess Rummens, Coast Guard Cutter Tahoma, Kittery, Maine

Petty Officer 3rd Class Patrick Lachey, Coast Guard Cutter Spencer, Boston

Petty Officer 1st Class Matthew Iulo, Coast Guard Maritime Safety and Security Team, Boston

Petty Officer 1st Class Joshua Ryder, Coast Guard Northeast Regional Fisheries Training Center, Bourne, Mass.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Marc Harrell, Coast Guard International Ice Patrol, Groton, Conn.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Alex Olbert, Coast Guard Sector Northern New England, Portland, Maine

Petty Officer 2nd Class Nicole Colston, Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod, Bourne, Mass.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Shane O’Connor, Coast Guard Academy, New London, Conn.

Petty Officer 1st Class Dustin Fisler, Coast Guard 1st District, Boston

Petty Officer 2nd Class Amanda Harris, Coast Guard Station Point Judith, R.I.

Petty Officer 1st Class Ashanti El-Amin, Coast Guard Base Boston

Reserve nominees were:

Petty Officer 1st Class Carl Heise, Coast Guard Port Security Unit 301, Bourne, Mass.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jerod LaFlamme, Coast Guard Naval Engineering Support Unit Boston

Petty Officer 2nd Class Joseph Carson, Coast Guard Station New York

Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew Willett, Coast Guard Station New London, Conn.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jenelle Piche, Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England, Woods Hole, Mass.

Among the distinguished guests in attendance were Rear Adm. Linda Fagan, 1st District commander, and Master Chief Petty Officer Dale Steinmetz, the 1st District command master chief and senior-most enlisted member in the district.

“It is extremely important to recognize our hard-working and dedicated junior enlisted personnel, and this event honors the contributions they make to the Coast Guard and the communities they serve,” said Steinmetz. He said the selection process this year was difficult because each candidate was outstanding. “All of the submission packages reflected 26 stellar petty officers who are clearly committed to serving others and setting a high bar,” he said.

The two winners will go on to compete against EPOY selectees from other districts throughout the country, and the commandant of the Coast Guard will ultimately select only one active and one reserve EPOY. They will be meritoriously advanced to the next higher pay grade, be considered for a Commendation Medal, and their names will be inscribed on a perpetual plaque maintained at Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C.

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