2014 HENAAC GREAT MINDS IN SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING AND MATH (STEM) COAST GUARD AWARD WINNER
Thursday, September 4, 2014
Posted by: Julio Gonzalez
Congratulations to our ANSO shipmates, RADM Ronald Rabago and LCDR Luis Carmona!!
RADM Ronald Rabago, is the 2014 HENAAC Executive Excellence Award Winner. RADM Rabago retired from the Coast Guard this summer after 36 years of exceptional military service and departed with a legacy of contributions. RADM Rabago became the first Coast Guard Hispanic officer to attain flag rank. Since his promotion to the executive ranks in 2006 RADM Rabago served in numerous demanding positions. As the Coast Guards Assistant Commandant for Acquisitions and Chief Acquisitions Officer he oversaw the largest acquisition and contracting operations in DHS with over 930 personnel and an annual budget in excess of 1.5 billon dollars. RADM Rabago led the most successful acquisition modernization in Coast Guard history that resulted in Coast Guard success in delivering capable, mission-ready assets, such as the National Security Cutter, Fast Response Cutter and Coastal Patrol Boat fleets, as well as the Response Boat-Medium and Rescue 21. Most recently, RADM Rabago served as the Assistant Commandant for Engineering and Logistics, held the title of Chief Engineer, and oversaw activities of 5,000 engineering professionals with a budget exceeding one billion dollars. RADM Rabago successfully directed the Coast Guard through highly complex and politically sensitive projects, including the 500 million dollar construction of the Coast Guard Headquarters campus, the single largest, most technologically advanced shore plant project in Coast Guard history. When not hard at work, RADM Rabago gave back to the community through selfless service. Of particular note, he played a critical role in the Engineering and Science Extravaganzas program at the University of Texas El Paso, College of Engineering. The program exposed economically disadvantaged high school students from diverse backgrounds to STEM disciplines. This program included the Robotics on the Water competition, where students were provided the opportunity to plan, practice, and test their skills in STEM.
LCDR Luis Carmona, is the 2014 HENAAC Luminary Honoree Award Winner. LCDR Carmona, a graduate of the Coast Guards College Student Pre-Commissioning Initiative (CSPI) program, leveraged his extensive engineering expertise with significant international impact while currently assigned to Sector New Orleans. As a marine inspector, LCDR Carmona worked in the worlds most diverse port, where 20 billion dollars of various commodities move globally. During Hurricane Isaac, LCDR Carmona showcased his engineering knowledge and led the reopening of operations of the Mississippi River waterways after 39 large and small vessels were grounded, hampering vessel movement along the river. He played a critical and direct role in salvage operations oversight, facilitating waterway clearance in just three days after the hurricane hit the area. Just a few months later LCDR Carmona was handpicked by his command to travel with a team to a South America country and inspect a foreign vessel suspected of smuggling contraband. Upon arriving, LCDR Carmona immediately identified major safety conditions due to improper vessel loading.
After locating and reviewing the ships plans and using his bilingual Spanish speaking skills, he devised an unloading strategy plan that he articulated to local government officials who were able to stabilize the vessel, unload shipped contents, and expose hidden illegal weapons and aircraft. Because of his exceptional performance, he was recognized by the country US Ambassador and its President. His dedication to his community is just as impressive. The Coast Guard recognized LCDR Carmona as Diversity Champion of the Week for significant contributions in support of the Commandants Diversity Strategic Plan and OPTASK Diversity. As a Diversity Outreach Team member, he volunteered as a coach during three annual HENAAC GMIS College bowls, mentoring and leading college students. He also participated numerous times as a guest speaker at several Hispanic Association of College and Universities (HACU) events annually.