The US Coast Guard has appointed Rear Adm. Melissa Bert to the post of judge advocate general and chief counsel, being the first woman to hold the service’s top legal position.
Specifically, Bert was recently the director of governmental and public affairs for the Coast Guard, where she was responsible for external engagement with Congress, the media and other inter-governmental entities.
Now, as judge advocate general and chief counsel she will lead the team responsible for all legal services in support of the Coast Guard’s missions, its units and its people.
Bert is the Coast Guard’s 20th chief counsel and seventh uniformed judge advocate general. She joins other trailblazing women in the Coast Guard’s legal field like Capt. Eleanor Creed L’Ecuyer and Capt. Etha B. Fox of the Coast Guard Reserve, both of whom joined the Coast Guard in 1944.
In summer 2019, the USCG appointed the first active duty female maritime law enforcement specialist warrant officer. Namely, Chief Warrant Officer Amy Barringer made history June 1, 2019, when she became the first active duty female warrant officer in her specialty.
Concluding, the Coast Guard’s support in favour of women in the shipping industry was apparent when they launched a special edition of its “Proceedings” series, featuring the contributions of women in the US maritime, highlighting the importance of gender equality.