Captain Curtiss C. Potter takes command of U.S. Coast Guard PATFORSWA

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U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area
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Captain Curtiss C. Potter takes command of U.S. Coast Guard PATFORSWA




MANAMA, Bahrain — U.S. Coast Guard Patrol Forces Southwest Asia (PATFORSWA) holds a change of command ceremony aboard  Naval Support Activity on June 6, 2019. 

Capt. Curtiss C. Potter relieves Capt. J. Paul Gregg as commander of PATFORSWA in a ceremony presided over by Vice Adm. Scott A. Buschman, Commander, U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area.

Potter takes over as the new commander of Task Group 55.1, during a dynamic time in Middle East geopolitics.  The 250 members of PATFORSWA apply training to meet changing situations, steadfastly living up to their service motto: Semper Paratus, "Always Ready."

Under the operational control of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, PATFORSWA is the U.S. Coast Guard's largest unit outside the United States and plays a key role in maritime security, maritime infrastructure, maritime protection, theater security cooperation and counter-smuggling. PATFORSWA is composed of six 110-foot Island-class cutters, shore side support personnel and the Maritime Engagement Team. They also support other U.S. Coast Guard deployable specialized forces operating throughout CENTCOM's area of responsibility.

Since the establishment of PATFORSWA in 2003, U.S. Coast Guard expertise has been in high demand across a wide variety of the service's 11 statutory missions throughout the CENTCOM area of responsibility. Alongside defense operations, the U.S. Coast Guard's counter-smuggling expertise is constantly sought during visits, boards, search and seizure operations conducted under the authority of the multi-national Combined Maritime Forces.

The U.S. Coast Guard is building a status and becoming one of the world's leading expert in maritime counter-smuggling. PATFORSWA shares law enforcement knowledge and best practices with an international engagement regimen consisting of 1,200 personnel from 30 countries annually. PATFORSWA also provides information in other Coast Guard mission areas such as: boat operations, search and rescue, damage control and engineering.

Recently there have been several successful counter-smuggling cases within the region by the Royal Australian Navy's Patrol Coastal Squadron One. Those successful cases have led to more requests for Coast Guard and Department of Defense subject matter experts to team up with Middle Eastern and African coalitions. PATFORSWA remains committed to the guiding principles of our Commandant, Adm. Karl Schultz: Ready, Relevant, and Responsive.



The U.S. Coast Guard is a military, maritime, multi-mission service within the
Department of Homeland Security dedicated to protecting the safety and security of America.