On Friday, May 26, the Senate confirmed Admiral Thomas J. Barrett as the Administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.
Barrett graduated from Coast Guard Officer Candidate School, Yorktown, Va. and was commissioned in January 1969. He served first as a deck officer, including aboard the USCG Cutter Chase (WHEC718) with deployment to Vietnam. He then served on the 13th Coast Guard District staff in Seattle, Wash. Following duty in the Claims and Litigation Division, Office of Chief Counsel, and Project Staff for Outer Continental Shelf Safety, Office of Marine Safety, Security and Environmental Protection, Barrett reported for the first of several tours in Alaska, eventually moving up to the post of Commanding Officer of the Coast Guard Support Center, home to nine commands on Kodiak Island and the largest operational Coast Guard base in the world. He was stationed throughout the Gulf Coast of Alaska, where he commanded the Seventeenth Coast Guard District and served as Commander, Naval Forces Alaska. Barrett directed USCG operations in the North Pacific, including the Gulf of Alaska, the Eastern Bering Sea, and the Arctic Ocean. In 2002, the Alaska State Legislature officially honored his contributions to the state. He has also served as Deputy Commander of Coast Guard Maintenance and Logistics Command, Atlantic and Special Assistant to the Chief Counsel.
The admiral’s civilian and military education includes a law degree from George Washington University, and graduation in residence from the Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pa. His personal decorations include the Legion of Merit with three devices, Meritorious Service Medal with two devices, Coast Guard Commendation Medals with two devices, the Coast Guard Achievement Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, and numerous other personal and unit decorations.