As announced by the White House earlier today:
President George W. Bush today announced his intention to nominate Vice Admiral Thad W. Allen to be Commandant of the United States Coast Guard. Vice Admiral Allen currently serves as Chief of Staff for the United States Coast Guard. He also served as the Principal Federal Official overseeing Hurricane Katrina response and recovery efforts in the Gulf Coast region.As I've noted earlier, I should hope so. After Admiral Allen saved W's bacon...
Vice Admiral Allen previously served as Commander of the United States Coast Guard Atlantic Area, Fifth United States Coast Guard District, and the United States Maritime Defense Zone, Atlantic Fleet. In addition, he led the Atlantic forces in the United States Coast Guard's response to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Prior to that position, Vice Admiral Allen commanded the Seventh United States Coast Guard District and was the Director of Resources for the United States Coast Guard. Earlier in his career, he served as Group Commander and Captain of the Port for Long Island Sound in Long Island, New York.
Vice Admiral Allen received his bachelor's degree from the United States Coast Guard Academy, his first master's degree from The George Washington University, and his second master's degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Allen -- who burnished his reputation, and that of the agency, when he stepped in to take control of post-Katrina recovery operations from the disgraced and later fired head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Michael Brown -- is "far and away the best qualified candidate," agreed Stephen Flynn.From the Secretary:
Flynn, a 20-year Coast Guard veteran who went on to the National Security Council, serving the elder President Bush and his successor, President Clinton, said that Allen had been a favorite inside the agency long before his military bearing and take-charge manner helped reassure Americans that the Gulf Coast disaster area was in safe hands when he replaced Brown as the principle federal official responsible for the recovery effort.
"He's hit every button, and then some," said Flynn, now a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, outlining Allen's career.
His first job as an admiral was as the Coast Guard's director of resources, where he wrote the agency's budget and developed long range plans.
Flynn said it was in that post that he worked with and became a protégé of the guard's then-Chief of Staff Adm. James Loy. As Loy rose to become commandant himself, he was widely seen as grooming Allen, who he gave command of the Coast Guard's Seventh District, covering South Carolina, Georgia, most of Florida and the Caribbean, which Flynn called "the most operationally important" of the guard's districts.
After a year there, Flynn said, he went on to be commander of the agency's Atlantic Area, effectively overseeing the two-thirds of the Coast Guard based east of the Rockies.
Thad has my complete confidence and full support, and if confirmed, he will play a major role in shaping the future of this department.Stand by for heavy rolls. It's going to be a great ride: see if you can keep up.
Most Americans came to know and respect Thad for his work overseeing the federal government’s recovery efforts following the devastation from Hurricane Katrina.