Regional Exam Centers Transfer to National Maritime Center

Martinsburg, WV – On February 4, 2008, the Regional Examination Centers (REC’s) located in Toledo, Ohio and St. Louis, Missouri will begin their transition to become field units of the National Maritime Center (NMC), located in Martinsburg, West Virginia.

REC Toledo and REC St. Louis will start operating as a storefront operation where the staffs will help the mariner ensure their application is ready for evaluation. Once ready, the RECs will send the application to the NMC for evaluation. The NMC will conduct an entire evaluation, including security, professional qualification, and medical. Mariners will still need to verify their identity, get fingerprinted and take their tests at the REC. Once the application is found to be fully qualified, the credential will be printed and issued by the NMC.

REC Toledo and REC St. Louis will be joining four other RECs, who have already transitioned: REC Anchorage, Alaska; REC Baltimore, Maryland; REC Juneau, Alaska; and, REC New Orleans, Louisiana. By the end of this calendar year, all 17 RECs nationwide will have transitioned to NMC field units.

The future role of the transitioned RECs will be primarily that of a mariner advocate. As the “face” of the Coast Guard to the mariner, it is essential that they help the mariner complete the application and ensure it is ready to be evaluated before forwarding the application to the NMC for evaluation.

The goal of the restructuring and centralization effort is to improve customer service, decrease credential processing time, and improve the consistency of our products. In the future, it is envisioned that credentials will be issued faster and the level of customer service will exceed the mariner’s expectations. If you have specific questions regarding the transition process, please contact your local REC or see the “REC Transition Guide” on the WNNMC web site at

If you have any problems viewing this article, please report it here.