5th District commander retires, welcomes new commander

PORTSMOUTH, Va. – The Coast Guard 5th District welcomed a new district commander during a change of command ceremony at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Base Support Unit Portsmouth.

Rear Adm. William “Dean” Lee relieved Rear Adm. Wayne Justice, who served as the 5th District’s commander since June 2009. The district includes the navigable waters from the middle of New Jersey to the South Carolina border.

Throughout his career, Justice was involved in the Coast Guard’s numerous mission areas including waterways security, search and rescue, and migrant interdiction. He served on six Coast Guard cutters, commanding four.

One of his most prominent achievements is his unofficial record within the counterdrug mission. The Coast Guard’s 5th District believes that Justice has set an individual record with his cutters’ participation in 40 drug seizures throughout his career. These busts totaled, seized more than 140 tons of marijuana and cocaine by the Coast Guard.

Lee reports to the 5th District following his most recent flag assignment as commander of the Deployable Operations Group, headquartered in Arlington, Va. As the DOG commander, Lee directed 27 deployable, specialized force units and more than 3,000 Coast Guard personnel operating in support of response, recovery and defense operations worldwide.

Admiral Robert J. Papp Jr., Coast Guard commandant, presided over Justice’s retirement ceremony and Vice Adm. Robert C. Parker, Atlantic Area commander, presided over the change of command ceremony.

A video with clips of the outgoing and incoming commanders can be viewed at the Coast Guard News Facebook page.

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