Galveston-based Coast Guard anti-terrorism unit receives readiness award

Coast Guard District 8 NewsGALVESTON, Texas ­— Coast Guard Marine Safety and Security Team Galveston (91104) was awarded the Sumner I. Kimball Readiness Award for excellence in operational readiness at their home base., Nov. 30.

“This award signifies MSST Galveston’s excellence in boat operations,” said Capt. Gene Gray, commander of the Deployable Operations Group. “In addition to large deployments to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and the Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation, the continued readiness they maintained while deployed across the hemisphere is a credit to proficiency and professionalism of MSST Galveston’s command and crew.”

Coast Guard boat force units receive this award for achieving an outstanding performance rating during a rigorous week-long inspection.

The inspection examines the condition of the unit’s boats and equipment, rescue and survival systems, crew knowledge of standard operating procedures and parameters, training program and readiness, practical drills and exercises. MSST Galveston exceeded the Coast Guard average in each category and attained one of the highest scores among deployable specialized force units.

While the Coast Guard maintains a high readiness posture, only 10-percent of shore-based boat force units are awarded the Kimball Award each year.

“I am extremely honored to lead the outstanding group of professionals stationed here at MSST Galveston,” said Lt. Cmdr. Chad Holm, MSST Galveston’s commanding officer. “I could not be more proud of the phenomenal job every member of this unit does on a daily basis to protect our nation’s borders and citizens.”

The award’s namesake, Sumner I. Kimball, was appointed by President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1878 to the post of General Superintendent of the U.S. Life-Saving Service which would later comprise a key component of the modern day Coast Guard. Kimball’s lofty standards laid a solid foundation and significantly contributed to the modern day Coast Guard’s reputation as life-saving responders.

Created under the Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002, the eleven MSSTs are a part of the United States Department of Homeland Security’s layered strategy directed at protecting seaports and waterways.

MSSTs are a component of the Deployable Operations Group. The DOG provides properly equipped, trained and organized Deployable Specialized Forces to Coast Guard, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense and interagency operational and tactical commanders.

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