Commanding Officer, USCGC Steadfast (WMEC-623)
Commander Alain V. Balmaceda
Commander Balmaceda is a 1996 graduate of the United States Coast Guard Academy with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering, and has 21 years active duty service in the Coast Guard.
Upon graduation from the Coast Guard Academy, he served as a Deck Watch Officer on the USCGC THETIS in Key West, FL and USCGC SPENCER in Boston, MA, from there; he served as a member of the commissioning crew and Plank Owner aboard the polar ice breaker USCGC HEALY. He sailed on her maiden voyage across the Northwest Passage en route to her homeport in Seattle, WA. While assigned to USCGC HEALY, he completed EOD dive qualifications through the U.S. Navy Dive and Salvage Training Center in Panama City, FL and was on HEALY’s first polar icebreaking dive team in support of National Science Foundation missions in the Arctic region.
Following these assignments, he attended the University of Illinois where he completed his Master of Science Degree in Civil Engineering. After post graduate training, he was assigned to Civil Engineering Unit Oakland where he served as a project engineer and Chief of the Ocean Engineering Branch. Upon completion of his staff tour, he served as the Operations Officer on the USCGC GALLATIN in Charleston, SC, the Executive Officer of USCGC ESCANABA in Boston, MA and the Executive Officer of USCGC MORGENTHAU in Honolulu, Hawaii.
CDR Balmaceda served as the Commanding Officer of USCG TRAINING TEAM EAST, there he led the effort to provide mobile training to support all Coast Guard Atlantic Area operational units. This included Maritime Law Enforcement, Special Emergency Operations and Procedures, and pre-deployment training for all Coast Guardsmen deploying to U.S. Coast Guard Patrol Forces Southwest Asia. He then served as the Deputy Chief of the Air and Maritime Programs Branch at United States Africa Command in Stuttgart, Germany. His most recent assignment was as Deputy Commander of Patrol Forces Southwest Asia, where he oversaw 260 Coast Guardsmen and six Island Class patrol cutters deployed to the Kingdom of Bahrain in support of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom.
CDR Balmaceda is married to the former Anne-Marie Caraig of Pensacola, Florida and they have three children, Isabel, Lucas and Mateo. He is a Cutterman and a qualified Coast Guard Diver. His personal awards include: the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medal, four Coast Guard Commendation Medals, and the Coast Guard Achievement Medal, as well as additional personal, unit and service awards.