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Commander John R. Bitterman

Commanding Officer, USCGC Steadfast (WMEC-623)


Commander John R. Bitterman, originally from Glenwood Springs, Colorado, enlisted into the Coast Guard in 1989.  He was accepted into the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut, where he graduated in 1995 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Government. 

CDR Bitterman has proudly served aboard the USCGC CLOVER (WMEC 292), Eureka, California; USCGC RUSH (WHEC 723), Honolulu, Hawaii;  Law Enforcement Team 8-G, Galveston, Texas; USCGC ALERT (WMEC 630), Astoria, Oregon; USCGC EDISTO (WPB 1313), San Diego, California; USCGC STEADFAST (WMEC 623), Astoria, Oregon;  and at U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters, Washington, D.C.  CDR Bitterman held a command position at USCGC EDISTO, and has had multiple leadership positions throughout his career.

During his distinguished career he has conducted maritime law enforcement, search and rescue, illegal immigration interdiction, and counter-narcotic operations throughout the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, the Caribbean, and in the Persian Gulf enforcing United Nations sanctions.

CDR Bitterman has been involved with the execution of over 1,000 law enforcement boardings, the seizure of over 15 metric tons of narcotics, the interdiction of over 800 illegal migrants, and the successful completion of numerous search and rescue cases.

CDR Bitterman's principal awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, three Coast Guard Commendation Medals, the 9/11 Medal, two Coast Guard Achievement medals, the Commandant’s Letter of Commendation, and numerous unit and personal awards.


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Last Modified 7/22/2014