Broward Council Members and Friends
On behalf of the officers and Board of Directors, our thanks to those who joined us for our Installation of Officers Luncheon aboard the REGAL PRINCESS on Sunday, January 10th. CAPT Mike Long, Deputy Com-mander of Coast Guard Sector Miami, served as our guest speaker and administered the oath to our offic-ers, who are continuing on from last year. Since both LT Mark Ketchum and LTJG Jessica Shafer also attended, we also took the opportunity to sign the official adoption document for Coast Guard Station Fort Lauderdale. Our thanks to Princess Cruises for once again donating the lunch, which allows us to use the proceeds from the luncheon to support our adopted unit and youth programs.
Larry Ott and I also represented the Council at the Change of Command Ceremony at the US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) on January 14th to welcome Admiral Kurt Tidd as the new SOUTHCOM Commander and to wish General John Kelly the best in his retirement after serving our country since the early 1970's. It's not often that both Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford, attend such events, and very fitting to bid farewell to General Kelly and welcome Admiral Tidd.
January also brought the start of planning meetings for Fleet Week 2016, with four US Navy ships and one or two Coast Guard cutters expected to participate from May 2-May 9, 2016. The "fleet" will be led by our own adopted unit the USS BATAAN, which we haven't seen in Port Everglades in many years. Erwin Sefton and I separately met with the BATAAN's Liaison Officer, LCDR Bradly Slaughter, while he was here, and will be working on a separate event on the BATAAN exclusively for Council members during Fleet Week. Come on out to the two remaining planning meetings scheduled for February 24th and March 23rd at 9 AM in the Port Everglades Administration Building Auditorium if you want to be involved as well. Our Council will also be selling soda and water during Fleet Week and we'll need to identify volunteers to help with that as the date gets closer.
Our February dinner meeting will be on Thursday, February 11th at Tropical Acres. Our guest speaker will be CDR Michael Fredie, Commanding Officer of the Coast Guard Tactical Law Enforcement Team (TACLET) South, located as a tenant command at Air Station Miami at Opa Locka. The TACLET provides law enforcement detachment teams that deploy on US Navy and other foreign naval vessels throughout the world to provide a unique capability to extend the US maritime law enforcement authority throughout the world to fight the shipment of illegal drugs. I hope that you will join us to hear about what the men and women assigned to TACLET South are doing every day to keep us safe and secure.
Looking forward to March, please ensure that you have Saturday, March 19th on your calendar. That's the date for our annual Easter Egg Hunt at the Coast Guard Station Fort Lauderdale. I know that Shelley Beck will need some assistance as she organizes another great event for our Coast Guard families.
Although previously announced to not go into effect until Spring 2016, the new dues structure is now in effect. The cost of an annual membership has been reduced to $55 (from $65), and a new eMembership category is available for $25 annually that will not include receiving a paper copy of the Sea Power magazine. There has been some confusion since previous categories of membership such as husband and wife have been eliminated. The new fees will not apply until your current membership expires, but for those that currently have husband and wife memberships that are expiring, I recommend signing up one spouse as a regular member and the other as an eMember so both stay as members.
We're also still working on scheduling adoption ceremonies for Coast Guard Station Fort Lauderdale, Aids to Navigation Team Fort Lauderdale, and Coast Guard Tactical Law Enforcement Team South in Opa Locka at those units, and will send out separate notices and let you know when those are confirmed.
As always, please feel free to contact me at 718-619-7402 or at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any ideas on what our Council should be doing to make your membership more valuable to you.
CAPT, US Coast Guard Retired