WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT – 2019 HOPLEY YEATON CUTTER EXCELLENCE AND SUPERIOR CUTTERMAN AWARDS

NSC 5 James on builders trials in the Gulf of Mexico March 30, 2015.

Passing this along:

united states coast guard

R 060959 DEC 19
FM COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC//CG-7//
TO ALCOAST
UNCLAS //N01650//
ALCOAST 377/19
COMDTNOTE 1650
SUBJ:  WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT – 2019 HOPLEY YEATON CUTTER EXCELLENCE AND SUPERIOR
CUTTERMAN AWARDS
1. The Douglas Munro Chapter of the Surface Navy Association is honored to announce
and congratulate the recipients of the 2019 Hopley Yeaton Cutter Excellence and
Superior Cutterman Awards. The winners were selected from amongst a highly
competitive pool of nominees. This year’s winners are:
    a. Cutter Excellence Award (Large Cutter): TIE CGC JAMES (WMSL 754)/CGC STRATTON (WMSL 752)
    b. Cutter Excellence Award (Small Cutter): CGC ORCAS (WPB-1327)
    c. Superior Cutterman Award (Officer): CWO Brad Jopling – CGC POLAR STAR (WAGB 10)
    d. Superior Cutterman Award (Enlisted): YN2 Samantha Tober – USCGC HOLLYHOCK (WLB 214)
2. Hopley Yeaton Cutter Excellence Award (Large) – TIE CGC JAMES (WMSL 754)/
CGC STRATTON (WMSL 752):
    a. JAMES was the first U.S. asset on scene in the Bahamas following Hurricane
DORIAN, where the cutter acted as Commander, Task Group (CTG) Bahamas. JAMES
exercised Tactical Control (TACON) over two surface action groups, each comprised
of a medium endurance cutter and four fast response cutters, while providing air
traffic control for 32 aircraft conducting 198 sorties, answering 1388 search and
rescue calls, and saving 457 people. JAMES’ ship’s force completed three JIATF-S
patrols, seized 12,055 kgs of cocaine and delivered 64 suspected traffickers for
U.S. prosecution. JAMES also expended significant effort to achieve outstanding
engineering readiness, including $4M in maintenance contracts and an innovative
35-day post-patrol MDE repair. JAMES was the first Legend-class cutter to receive
the permanent Scan Eagle drone technology install, and achieved a 1,060 kg drug
bust during its first use.
    b. STRATTON completed a 165-day Western Pacific (WESTPAC) deployment immediately
following achievement of the Overall Operational Readiness Excellence (“E”) award.
STRATTON’s WESTPAC deployment included exercising the US-Fiji bi-lateral agreement
and acting under the TACON of Amphibious Group Seven for Exercise Talisman Sabre (TS19),
a three week Indo-Pacific Command Exercise against a fictional opposing force in the
Pacific theater. Thereafter, STRATTON shifted TACON to Combined Task Force (CTF) 73 for
exercises in the first island chain surrounding China, including Cooperation Afloat
Readiness and Training (CARAT). For numerous exercises, STRATTON was the lead planner
for divisional tactics, SAR, MDA, VBSS/MLE gunnery, cross-deck flight operations, and
fueling at sea. STRATTON conducted Freedom of Navigation Operations (FONOPS), often
in close proximity to politically sensitive areas such as the Paracel Islands,
Senkaku Islands, Scarborough Reef, and the Korean Peninsula supporting U.N. Security
Council Resolutions (UNSCR).
    c. Honorable Mentions for the Large Cutter Award are:
       CGC BERTHOLF (WMSL 750)
       CGC POLAR STAR (WAGB 10)
       CGC RESOLUTE (WMEC 620)
3. Hopley Yeaton Cutter Excellence Award (Small) – CGC ORCAS (WPB-1327):
    a. Despite its remote location, turbulent Pacific Northwest weather conditions
and challenges with the Government Shutdown, ORCAS completed the most Living
Marine Resource (LMR) boardings of any USCG unit for FY19. These boardings
resulted in 61 safety violations, four major fisheries violations, and three
vessel terminations. ORCAS played a pivotal role during the largest meth drug
seizure in D13 history; ORCAS towed the interdicted vessel with 1,595 kgs of
methamphetamine 120NM in 10 ft seas, and stood an eight-day custody watch over
the vessel until turnover to the DEA. Managing five safe-to-sail casualties
including underway engine room flooding due to a leaking shaft and loss of both
SSDGs underway due to bad fuel, ORCAS performed flawlessly in meeting all
operational tasking. Committed to its crew and community, ORCAS hosted an
“Eight Bells” sunset cruise for 75+ family members & various local state &
federal partners, in addition to 300 hours of volunteer work for the Marshfield
Cemetery, City of North Bend, Habitat for Humanity, and Operation Rebuild Hope.
    b. Honorable Mentions for the Small Cutter Award are:
       CGC ISAAC MAYO (WPC 1112)
       CGC BAILEY BARCO (WPC 1122)
       CGC KATHERINE WALKER (WLM 552)
4. Hopley Yeaton Superior Cutterman Award (Officer) – CWO Brad Jopling:
    a. A permanent cutterman with ten years of sea time, CWO Jopling serves as Main
Propulsion Assistant (MPA) in CGC POLAR STAR (WAGB 10). In this capacity, CWO
Jopling was absolutely pivotal in ensuring POLAR STAR sailed for Operation DEEP
FREEZE 2019 in support of resupplying McMurdo station, Antarctica, and Presidential
mandates. Through his efforts, POLAR STAR completed a new $4.4M electrical
propulsion control & monitoring system upgrade to correct major system flaws and
greatly improved electrical plant reliability. CWO Jopling led the cutter through
a $10M dry dock availability, working to secure $1.3M of crucial parts and the
early discovery of correctable gaps. CWO Jopling’s inspirationally developed his
subordinates by leading drills, training, and managing crew personnel tempo
(PERSTEMPO). As a direct result of his dedication, the crew was ready to respond
to numerous fire and flooding casualties, including an out of control incinerator
fire and an electrical fire on the ship’s Westinghouse propulsion control system.
Lastly, while on deployment, hove to in Antarctic ice, CWO Jopling demonstrated
exceptional valor by entering a compartment flooded to chest level with 28 degree
water and executed an innovative repair to replace the centerline shaft seal and
enable icebreaking operations to resume.
    b. Honorable Mentions for the Superior Cutterman Award (Officer) are:
       CDR Charles Novak – CGC HARRIET LANE (WMEC 903)
       CAPT Roy Brubaker – CGC RESOLUTE (WMEC 620)
       LCDR Nicholas Zieser – CGC HAMILTON (WMSL 753)
5. Hopley Yeaton Superior Cutterman Award (Enlisted) – YN2 Samantha Tober:
    a. YN2 Samantha Tober is a temporary cutterman serving as independent duty
Yeoman in CGC HOLLYHOCK (WLB 214). Embracing the “can-do” cutterman mentality,
YN2 Tober exceled in all aspects and went the extra mile to get the job done. As
a qualified Master Helmsman, YN2 Tober completed 68 moorings, 85 Aids to Navigation
evolutions, 30 restricted waters transits, and helmed through 188 hours of
icebreaking operations. YN2 Tober revamped the cutter’s Master Helmsman JQR,
including developing ice navigation and close quarters maneuvering sections.
Through YN2’s efforts, the cutter excelled in executing CG policy and taking care
of its 50 person crew, including 100% compliance during the Finance & Administration
inspection, work-day schedule revisions, inport watch duty rotation management, crew
pay and transfers, sailor of the quarter program, and public affairs program
(personally leading over 70 tour groups). Lastly, when HOLLYHOCK was selected to
prototype a commercial Short Range UAS, YN2 volunteered to become a remote pilot,
completed 40 hours of training and instruction, passed the FAA licensing exam, and
logged 16 flight hours.
    b. Honorable Mentions for the Superior Cutterman Award (Enlisted) are:
       BM1 Luke Berghuis – CGC KIMBALL (WMSL 756)
       BM2 Donald Abey – CGC WAESCHE (WMSL 751)
       SN Matthew Sevy – CGC MOHAWK (WMEC 913)
6. The SNA will coordinate with OPCONs to recognize this year’s winners.
7. Bravo Zulu and great work to this year’s Hopley Yeaton Award recipients
and nominees. This year’s nominees were selected by panels consisted of 48
Active Duty and Retired Permanent cuttermen from the ranks of O9 to E5 who
collectively amassed 496 years of sea time. The sheer volume of praiseworthy
nominees, as well as the high quality award write-ups continues to impress.
Thank you to all commands for submitting and reviewing nominations.
8. RDML Matthew W. Sibley, Assistant Commandant for Capability, sends.
9. Internet release is authorized.

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