WASHINGTON — Adm. Karl L. Schultz was named the 26th commandant of the Coast Guard on Friday, taking over a military service that is in the midst of a fleet modernization as it juggles homeland security priorities like intercepting drugs and migrants and responding to disasters.
President Trump attended Admiral Schultz’s change of command ceremony, held on the first day of the annual hurricane season.
“I envision our heading remaining generally steady,” Admiral Schultz said.
It was a compliment to his predecessor Adm. Paul F. Zukunft, who had directed the fleet modernizing effort and steered the first budget increase in years to the Coast Guard, the 227-year-old military branch that is overseen by the Department of Homeland Security.
Admiral Schultz had commanded the Coast Guard’s Atlantic area and last year oversaw the fleet’s response to Hurricanes Irma, Maria and Harvey. The service rescued nearly 12,000 people along the East Coast and in Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands during the deadly 2017 hurricane season.