Capt. Richard E. Batson
Chief of Staff
Fifth Coast Guard District
Captain Batson currently serves as Chief of Staff for the Fifth Coast Guard District, and is responsible for the Coast Guard maritime safety and security missions throughout the Mid-Atlantic region from central New Jersey through North Carolina, covering 156,000 square miles of ocean, bays, and rivers, several major Mid-Atlantic ports, the largest naval base in the world, and our Nation’s Capital.
Captain Batson previously served as the Commanding Officer of the Coast Guard Legal Service Command, providing full-spectrum legal support for the Coast Guard’s Mission Support enterprise, and military justice and court-martial support for the entire U.S. Coast Guard. As a Judge Advocate, Captain Batson also served as the Executive Assistant to the Judge Advocate General and Chief, Office of Legal Policy and Program Development; as a member of the Military Justice Review Group, established by the DoD General Counsel to conduct a comprehensive review of the military justice system; as Staff Judge Advocate at Coast Guard Training Center Yorktown; the Contract and Fiscal Law Branch and Operations Law Branch at Coast Guard Maintenance and Logistics Command Atlantic; and as a Trial Counsel at the U.S. Navy Trial Service Office at Naval Station Norfolk, where he was also appointed a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney. In 2008, he was appointed to the trial judiciary, and served as a military judge, presiding at courts-martial throughout the Coast Guard until 2012.
Captain Batson has also served in a variety of assignments outside the legal program, including speechwriter and special assistant to the Commandant of the Coast Guard; Executive Officer of Maritime Intelligence Fusion Center Atlantic; Coast Guard Marine Safety Office Tampa, Florida, where he served as Senior Investigating Officer and Chief of Waterways Management; the Marine Investigations and Analysis Division at Coast Guard Headquarters; and the Coast Guard Cutter WOODRUSH, home ported in Sitka, Alaska.
Captain Batson is 1987 graduate of Appalachian State University with a B.S. in Music Industry Studies. He enlisted in the Coast Guard in 1989 and attended QM "A" school immediately following Basic Training. He was commissioned in 1993 following graduation from Officer Candidate School. Captain Batson is a 1998 graduate of Troy University with Master of Public Administration degree; a 2014-2015 Seminar XXI Fellow in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Center for International Studies; and a 2016 graduate of the Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy at National Defense University, where he earned the Master of Science degree in National Resource Strategy. He received his law degree (cum laude) in 2002 from the Case Western Reserve University School of Law, and was selected by the American Bar Association as the 2004-2005 Outstanding Young Military Lawyer for the United States Coast Guard.
(Current as of June 8, 2021)