NEW ORLEANS –Capt. Blake Welborn relieved Cdr. Gretchen Bailey as commander of Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Houma and Cdr. Heather Mattern relieved Capt. Blake Welborn as commander of Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Morgan City in an official change-of-command ceremony, Thursday.
Welborn will continue to serve as the captain of the port, federal maritime security coordinator, federal on-scene coordinator, and officer-in-charge of marine inspection for the area but he will now be based out of Houma.
Mattern reported to Marine Safety Unit Morgan City from Coast Guard Sector New York as the chief of inspections division where she supervised over 40 marine inspectors and was in charge of regulating a commercial fleet responsible for carrying 60 million passengers and $210 billion in port cargo annually.
The change of command is a time-honored tradition deeply rooted in Coast Guard and Naval history. It represents a total transfer of responsibility, authority, and accountability from one individual to another.