Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater crewmembers held a change of command ceremony Wednesday, where Capt. Scott Phy relieved Capt. Joseph McGilley as the commanding officer.
Rear Adm. Brendan McPherson, commander of Coast Guard District Seven, presided over the ceremony where local, state and federal dignitaries were in attendance.
A military unit’s change of command is a transfer of total responsibility, authority and accountability from one individual to another.
Capt. McGilley is transferring to Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington D.C., as the Coast Guard’s chief of aeronautical engineering. He has served four staff assignments and six operational positions.
“It has been an honor and privilege to live with and serve the community of the Tampa Bay area and beyond,” said McGilley. “I know Capt. Phy will do well as he has an amazing crew to work with him during his tenure.”
Capt. Phy is reporting from a joint assignment with the U.S. Air Force’s Special Operations Command where he served as the senior Department of Homeland Security and Coast Guard liaison to the Special Operations Command. Phy was previously assigned at Air Station Clearwater as the operations officer in 2014 and became the executive officer from 2016 to 2018. He is accompanied by his wife, Lisa, and two children.
Air Station Clearwater is the Coast Guard’s largest and busiest air station, executing the Coast Guard’s missions throughout the Southeast, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean and Central America. In the last three years, the unit’s Coast Guardsmen have responded to a record number of hurricane operations including hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas, as well as critical humanitarian relief for Haiti after political instability and a major earthquake. Air Station Clearwater remained, “everywhere, every time” during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure safety and security for the region.