Adaptability: Ability to modify work methods and priorities in response to new information, changing conditions, political realities, or unexpected obstacles.1
“To improve is to change, so to be perfect is to change often.” — Winston Churchill
In October 1942, Coast Guard Commander Merlin O’Neill received orders to command the USS Leonard Wood (AP-25), a 535-foot merchant ship converted into a military troop transport vessel. His report date: within 24 hours of receipt of orders. O’Neill left his office at Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, DC, packed his seabag, and kissed his wife and children goodbye. Within weeks, O’Neill and the Leonard Wood, with a complement of 50 officers, 600 crew, and 2,500 Marines, set out to cross the Atlantic Ocean for the Allied amphibious invasion of Casablanca. During the next two years, O’Neill and his crew would sail the world as they transported soldiers, prisoners of war, and the injured between Europe, the States, and the Pacific islands.2
1. U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Coast Guard Officer Evaluation Report (CG-5310A), February, 2019.
2. The Reminiscences of Admiral Merlin O’Neill, U.S. Coast Guard (Retired), Interview by Peter Spectre, U.S. Naval Institute (Annapolis, MD), 2004.
3. The Reminiscences of Admiral Merlin O’Neill.
4. The Reminiscences of Admiral Merlin O’Neill.
5. Kate B. Odell, “Not Every Officer Wants to Be a General,” Wall Street Journal. May 21, 2019.
6. Kimberly Curry Hall, Kristen M. Keller, David Schulker, Sarah Weilant, Katherine L. Kidder, and Nelson Lim, Improving Gender Diversity in the U.S. Coast Guard: Identifying Barriers to Female Retention, Homeland Security Operational Analysis Center operated by the RAND Corporation, 2019.
8. Charles Ray, “Accelerating Toward our Future,” ALCOAST 214/18, 1 June 2018.
9. Matthew Sibley, “Reimbursement of Spouse State Licenses and Certification Costs,” ACN 066/19, 21 June 2019.
10. William Lane, “Enlisted Personnel Management Assignment Year 2014 (AY14) Final Report,” ALCGENL 097/14, 2 May 2014.
11. S. Matadobra, “Enlisted Personnel Management (EPM) Assignment Year 2019 (AY19) Final Report,” ALCGEN 041/19, 4 April 2019.
12. Mike Day, “Officer Assignment Year 2019 (AY19) Final Report,” ALCOFF 061/19, 24 May 2019.