President Obama to Nominate Vice Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr., as Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard Dec 22nd, 2009 by cgnews. Washington – President Obama intends to nominate Vice Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr., as Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard. If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Vice Admiral Papp would relieve Admiral Thad Allen in May 2010. “The Coast Guard plays a vital role in protecting our nation—securing America’s borders, protecting our ports, and providing critical aid during disasters,” said Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. “Vice Admiral Papp’s extensive knowledge of the Coast Guard’s operations and broad mission will strengthen our efforts to ensure the nation’s maritime security.” As Coast Guard Commandant, Papp will lead one of the Department’s largest components-comprised of approximately 42,000 Active Duty men and women and more than 7,000 civilian employees-and oversee Coast Guard functions as a branch of the armed services and a federal law enforcement agency. Papp currently serves as Commander of the Coast Guard Atlantic Area (LANTAREA) and Defense Force East—functioning as the operational commander for all Coast Guard missions within the eastern half of the world. Prior to assuming command of LANTAREA, he served as the Chief of Staff of the Coast Guard in Washington. Papp served as Ninth Coast Guard District Commander from 2004-2006, and was previously promoted to Flag rank in October 2002 and appointed Director of Reserve and Training. His Coast Guard career includes extensive tours on both land and sea including service on six Coast Guard Cutters and posts such as Chief of the Capabilities Branch in the Defense Operations Division; Chief of the Fleet Development Team; and Chief of the Coast Guard’s Office of Congressional Affairs. Papp graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and holds a master’s in national security and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval War College and a master’s in management from Salve Regina College.