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Press Release | July 15, 2023

Coast Guard Sector Anchorage holds change of command ceremony

D17 Public Affairs

Anchorage, Alaska   –  

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Capt. Christopher Culpepper relieved Capt. Leanne Lusk as commanding officer of Coast Guard Sector Anchorage during a change of command ceremony at Joint Base Elemendorf-Richardson, Friday.

Rear Adm. Megan Dean, commander, Coast Guard 17th District, presided over the event.

Culpepper just completed a one-year military Fellows program at Carnegie Mellon University’s Institute for Politics and Strategy.  Previously, he was the commanding officer of Coast Guard Maritime Force Protection Unit (MFPU) Kings Bay. He led nearly 150 personnel and was charged with the protection of U.S. Navy ballistic missile submarines while surfaced and transiting U.S. territorial waters to and from their patrol stations in Kings Bay, Georgia.

Culpepper received his commission from the Coast Guard Academy in 2002 where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Management.

“My family and I have been eager to arrive, and we are all encouraged by the warm welcome from the unit and our new neighbors,” said Culpepper. “The personnel and our partners are constantly working hard in numerous directions to build cooperative solutions and I am honored to be part of this endeavor.”

Lusk, who has served as Sector Anchorage’s commanding officer since 2020, will retire after 25 years of service. After retirement, Lusk will remain in Alaska with her family.

"It has been an absolute honor to work alongside such a fantastic group of people,” said Lusk. “I’m so proud of the work they do every day, and I couldn’t think of a better group of people to conclude my career with.” 

Sector Anchorage is the Coast Guard’s largest sector in terms of geographic area, exercising authority in a jurisdiction extending throughout the Arctic and Western Alaska, the North Slope, the Aleutian Islands, and Prince William Sound.

The change-of-command ceremony is a military tradition representing a formal transfer of authority and responsibility for a unit from one commanding or flag officer to another. The passing of colors, standards, or ensigns from an outgoing commander to an incoming one ensures that the unit and its members are never without official leadership, a continuation of trust.