COAST GUARD COMMAND AFLOAT BADGE

Being given command of a Coast Guard Cutter is a great honor, but it is one that also carries with it great responsibilities. The Command Afloat insignia was established specifically to recognize commissioned and warrant officers who command or have commanded a Coast Guard cutter successfully by keeping its crew and passengers safe while seeking to complete their mission objectives.

Coast Guard officers below flag rank are eligible for Command Afloat Badge under several circumstances, but all of them mandate a continuous period of command of at least six months. They include commanding a single commissioned Coast Guard cutter or a division of cutters, being assigned as the commanding officer of a cutter with an augmented crew or acting in the capacity of a commanding officer, or being assigned to a cutter division in a capacity as one of the division’s commanding officer or acting in that capacity.

Officers at the rank of Captain (O6) or below and Chief Warrant Officers (W2-W5) who have met these eligibility requirements but whose current assignment does not provide authorization for wear of the Command Afloat badge may submit an authorization request to either the Officer Personnel Management Division (active-duty) or the Reserve Personnel Management Division of the Coast Guard Personnel Center.

Simply serving in a qualifying command position alone does not automatically result in authorization for wear of the Command Afloat Badge, but at the same time officers are not denied the insignia for isolated infractions of a minor or trivial nature. Instead, the decision to award the Badge is based on the officer’s overall performance while in command, and any decision to deny the insignia must be based upon documented facts and objective evidence.
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