Coast Guard Meritorious Advancement in Ketchikan, Alaska

Petty Officer 2nd Class Alta Jones, a boatswains mate, is meritoriously advanced to Petty Officer 1st Class during a ceremony at Coast Guard Station Ketchikan, Alaska, Nov. 25, 2020. Rear Adm. Matthew T. Bell, Jr., the 17th Coast Guard District commander, meritoriously advanced Jones for her outstanding contributions and accomplishments both on and off duty. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Jessica Fontenette

Petty Officer 2nd Class Alta Jones, a boatswains mate, is meritoriously advanced to Petty Officer 1st Class during a ceremony at Coast Guard Station Ketchikan, Alaska, Nov. 25, 2020.  U.S. Coast Guard photo by Jessica Fontenette

KETCHIKAN, Alaska – The Coast Guard meritoriously advanced a boatswains mate during a ceremony at Coast Guard Station Ketchikan Wednesday.

Rear Adm. Matthew T. Bell, Jr., the 17th Coast Guard District commander, meritoriously advanced Petty Officer 2nd Class Alta Jones, a boatswain’s mate at Station Ketchikan, to Petty Officer 1st Class in recognition of her outstanding contributions and accomplishments both on and off-duty.

“Petty Officer Jones is a tremendous leader who embodies the Coast Guard’s core values of honor, respect and devotion to duty,” said Bell. “Her example is an inspiration to others and I’m extremely pleased to recognize the outstanding role she plays in both the Coast Guard and the community of Ketchikan.”

Jones was recognized for exceptional proficiency while conducting Coast Guard operations and responding to a 250-ton vessel dragging an anchor. After arriving on scene and overcoming 115-mph winds, she was able to safely maneuver the much larger vessel into an area of safety, ultimately preventing a major pollution incident and saving the two lives aboard.

Additionally, Jones was recognized for performing duties well beyond her normal paygrade and filling critical leadership vacancies at Station Ketchikan. Serving as both the operations and training petty officer, she dedicated off-duty time to assist station members with enlisted performance qualifications, and aided in service-wide exam preparations. Jones’ efforts resulted in the qualification of 10 communication watch standers, 12 boat crewmembers, six engineers and three coxswains, subsequently enabling Station Ketchikan to meet all operational readiness requirements.

She also served as a Critical Incident Stress Management member and spearheaded an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) training program after identifying a lack of Coast Guard EMTs in the region.

Jones also contributed to the safety of the Ketchikan community through volunteer work off-duty, including as a volunteer firefighter at South Tongass Fire Department where she routinely assisted with multiple emergency medical calls each week.

“I am incredibly proud of Petty Officer Jones,” said Chief Petty Officer Nathaniel O’Connell, officer in charge at Station Ketchikan. “She is an outstanding performer and has implemented many positive changes here at the unit and in the community. She is the epitome of the Coast Guard’s core values and I could not be happier for her.”

The Meritorious Advancement Program is a talent-management program designed to recognize superior performance and exceptional adherence to Coast Guard core values that, in an advancement authority’s judgment, clearly warrant advancement. The Coast Guard’s meritorious advancement program began in 2018.

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