The Office of Strategic Services Society recognized the U.S. Coast Guard’s contributions to the OSS — the precursor to the Central Intelligence Agency — during World War II at a Tuesday evening event with Commandant Adm. Karl Schultz, Vice Commandant Adm. Charles Ray, and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Jason Vanderhaden.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a directive in 1941 to stand up the office of the Coordinator of Information, which became the OSS in 1942. The Coast Guard’s support to the OSS on covert, counter-intelligence, espionage and sabotage operations in the maritime environment was a unique instrument for national security policy during World War II domestically and abroad, and it helped lay the foundation for future Coast Guard operations. Because the information was classified for so long, the public is not fully aware of the relationship between the OSS and the Coast Guard, including Coast Guardsmen attached to the OSS in Europe and the China-Burma-India Theatre.
The OSS Society was founded in 1947 by Gen. William Donovan. It honors the historic accomplishments of the OSS during World War II and educates the American public regarding the continuing importance of strategic intelligence and special operations to the preservation of freedom.