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New London — Command of the U.S. Coast Guard Research & Development Center passed from Capt. Alan Arsenault to Capt. Dennis Evans in a ceremony today at the center.
Evans, the new commanding officer, graduated from the Coast Guard Academy. He holds a master’s degree in engineering and management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a master’s in civil engineering from the University of Illinois. His military awards include the Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medal and the Coast Guard Commendation Medal.
The Research & Development Center supports the Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, other U.S. government agencies and the international maritime community with technology for search and rescue, law enforcement, maritime safety, environmental protection and ports, waterways and coastal security. The center’s everyday mission ensures each Coast Guard unit has the equipment, training and policies needed.
The change of command ceremony is a tradition that formally restates to the officers and personnel the continuity of the authority of the command. It is a total transfer of responsibility, authority and accountability from one individual to another.
After commanding the center from 2011 to 2014, Capt. Arsenault is retiring with 26 years of service. Recent accomplishments of the center include high impact research efforts with unmanned aerial systems, Arctic oil-spill recovery, small boat alternative fuels, non-lethal devices to counter maritime narco-trafficking and advanced airborne thermal sensors.
Arsenault is a 1988 graduate of the Coast Guard Academy. His most recent assignments before the Research & Development Center were as commanding officer of the Electronics Systems Support Unit Seattle, assistant project manager for the Rescue 21 project and project manager for the Interagency Operations Centers Project in the Acquisition Directorate at Coast Guard Headquarters.