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My Coast Guard
Commentary | June 17, 2021

Bravo Zulu

By  Shana Brouder, MyCG Writer 

Winner of the 2020 John J. Jaskot Governmental Affairs Officer of the Year Award announced: Congratulations to Atlantic Area Governmental Affairs Officer (GAO) Feba Thomas on being awarded the prestigious 2020 John J. Jaskot Governmental Affairs Officer of the Year Award. Thomas has over 21 years of service to the Coast Guard governmental affairs community and continually exceeds expectation and standards to advance the strategic initiatives and goals of the Coast Guard in her work. Among several accomplishments in 2020, Thomas maximized virtual and modified in-person engagement opportunities including the 2020 Atlantic area change of command, multiple cutter changes of command, major cutter changes in homeports, and a National Security Cutter commissioning. She also developed the first-ever 90-day strategic communications plan, which resulted in 63 engagement and outreach efforts to introduce the new area commander to key stakeholders. This fostered immediate collaboration to help advance Coast Guard mission objectives. You can read more about Thomas’ accomplishments in the 2020 John J. Jaskot Governmental Affairs Officer (GAO) of the Year Award Recipient ALCOAST 212/21. Bravo Zulu Thomas and thank you for all you do for the Coast Guard!  

Important anniversary at Coast Guard Academy: Ten years ago, Lt. Kelli Normoyle was one of two cadets who formally started the process of creating CGA Spectrum—the first gay-straight alliance at a U.S. military service academy. Normoyle, who identifies as a lesbian, was initially hesitant to join the Coast Guard Academy (CGA) due to the law “don’t ask, don’t tell,” which required queer cadets to hide and deny this part of their identity. Normoyle decided she wanted to be part of the change at CGA. Today, CGA Spectrum is now known as a support network for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA+) cadets. Normoyle is currently preparing for her next assignment as the commanding officer of Coast Guard Cutter Sanibel, a 110-foot patrol boat homeported in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. Learn more about Normoyle’s story here. As we celebrate Pride Month in June, it is a good time to recognize the individuals throughout the Coast Guard who have made the service a more inclusive place for all. Thank you Lt. Kelli Normoyle for your hard work then and now!