The Coast Guard Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to strengthening the Coast Guard community and service by supporting members and families, announced recently that its first tribute event of the year will take place in New Orleans on March 11.

The event, which will honor members of the Coast Guard’s Eighth District, will return to the National WWII Museum for the first time since 2020.

At the event the Foundation will recognize the Coast Guard’s 2021 response to historic Hurricane Ida, which devastated a large swath of the Gulf Coast. Following the Category 4 storm’s landfall, the Coast Guard worked with federal, state and local agencies, as well as companies and individuals to respond to thousands of pollution reports and wrecked vessels, replace hundreds of damaged aids to navigation, and safely open key ports and waterways to commerce.

The Foundation will also honor the memory of longtime board member and offshore marine transportation executive Otto Candies, Jr., who died in February 2021. Candies started the Coast Guard Foundation’s New Orleans event with fellow board member Boysie Bollinger and served as the dinner chairman for most of its history.

Since 1994 the event has raised nearly $9 million for Foundation programs that support Coast Guard members.

The Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Karl Schultz, Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard Adm. Linda Fagan, and other national and regional leaders will attend, as will Coast Guard members from throughout the Gulf Coast. 

The evening will be emceed by the 23rd commandant of the Coast Guard, Adm. Thad Allen. Allen served as the Principal Federal Official for both the federal response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

“We are excited to be back in New Orleans to recognize the heroism of the men and women of the Coast Guard and shine a light on the life of Otto Candies,” Susan Ludwig, president, Coast Guard Foundation, said in a statement. “This event is vital to our efforts in the area and Otto was a driving force behind its success. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we can provide meaningful support to those who serve the Gulf Coast as they embark on important missions to protect the waterways of America’s Heartland.”

The Coast Guard Foundation’s Tribute to the Eighth Coast Guard District will be held on Friday, March 11, 2022, at the National World War II Museum, US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center, 1043 Magazine Street in New Orleans. A cocktail reception will begin at 6:30 p.m. with dinner and the program following at 7:30 p.m.