Commander Michael Sarnowski graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 1998 with a major in Operations Research. After graduation, he began his career aboard the 180’ CGC BRAMBLE, in Port Huron, MI, qualifying as Deck Watch Officer and conducting Aids to Navigation maintenance and Ice Breaking Operations on the Great Lakes. Commander Sarnowski next reported as Assistant Operations Officer on the 180’ CGC WOODRUSH. After sailing from Sitka to Baltimore, he helped to decommission WOODRUSH and immediately transferred to Sturgeon Bay, WI to assume the role of Operations Officer and commission the 225’ CGC MAPLE.
Following two sea tours, Commander Sarnowski went ashore as the Ninth District Contingency Planner in Cleveland, OH. There, he attended courses at Cleveland State University, and earned a Master’s Degree in Mathematics. In 2005, Commander Sarnowski was then selected as Commanding Officer of the 140’ CGC PENOBSCOT BAY, conducting Port, Waterway, and Coastal Security, Ice Breaking, and Aids to Navigation operations in New York Harbor. In 2008, he transferred to the Integrated Support Command in Ketchikan, AK, where he decommissioned the Integrated Support Command and assumed command of the Personnel Services and Support Unit.
Commander Sarnowski next assumed command of the 225’ CGC SYCAMORE where he conducted Aids to Navigation operations in Prince William Sound. In the Arctic Ocean off Barrow, he completed the first joint oil spill response exercise with the Army Corps of Engineers and the Navy Supervisor of Salvage and Diving. After this command tour, Commander Sarnowski served as the Chief of Afloat Training Organization San Diego. He was then selected as Executive Officer of the 378’ CGC DOUGLAS MUNRO out of Kodiak, AK, where he served prior to assuming the role of Commanding Officer of CGC TAHOMA.
Commander Sarnowski is a native of Middleport, NY and is married to the former Kelly Potter of Gasport, NY. They have two children, Alicia and Jacob.