Sector Commander

Captain Holly L. Najarian

As Sector Commander, Captain Najarian serves as Captain of the Port, Officer in Charge of Marine Inspection, Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator, Federal On-Scene Coordinator and Federal Maritime Security Coordinator while directing Coast Guard operations along the west coast of Florida and throughout the Tampa Bay region. Sector St. Petersburg is comprised of 2700 people and 12 units, including five search and rescue stations, six cutters, and an Aids to Navigation Team.

Previously, Captain Najarian was assigned to Coast Guard Headquarters in the Office of Budget and Programs (CG-821). Her portfolio spanned Inspections and Compliance (CG-5PC), Commercial Regulations and Standards (CG-5PS), Marine Environmental Response (CG-MER) and Incident Management and Preparedness Policy (CG-5RI), including 15 program offices in the Ops Ashore Prevention and Response Communities. Responsibilities included the drafting, review, analyses and formalization of policy, resource proposals, legislation and programmatic initiatives for the Coast Guard’s CFO, Vice and Commandant. She ensured program alignment with senior leadership direction, responded to external queries, prepared reports for Congress, DHS and OMB, and prepared Flag Officers and staffs for Congressional Hearings and briefs.

Captain Najarian received her Coast Guard commission in 1993 under the Coast Guard's Direct Commission Maritime Academy Graduate Program. Her career began as an inspector trainee at Marine Safety Office Jacksonville, Florida where she acquired both of her major inspector designations. She was then assigned as Supervisor of Marine Safety Field Office Portsmouth, New Hampshire; responsible for all marine safety and environmental response missions along the New Hampshire coastline.

After only two years at the field office she was selected to attend graduate school, followed by a tour as a Staff Engineer and Machinery Branch Chief at the Marine Safety Center in Washington D.C. She was responsible for the review of plans for the design, construction, and repair of vessels in accordance with international, laws, regulations and policies and specialized in fire suppression systems, lifesaving, and machinery design. She was then assigned as Chief of Inspections and Investigations at Sector Boston.

Captain Najarian followed up the tour in Boston with assignment as the Senior Prevention Assignment Officer at the Coast Guard Personnel Service Center. She provided career counseling, mentorship, and strategically placed senior career Prevention Officers into assignments to allow for career development and optimized mission execution.


In her follow-on tour as Deputy Commander, Sector Long Island Sound she served as Acting Sector Commander, Alternate Captain of the Port, and Acting Officer in Charge Marine Inspection across 300 miles of Connecticut and New York coastline. She supervised over 700 Active Duty, Reserve, and civilian employees, 1300 Auxiliary, 3 cutters, 8 stations, 2 aids to navigation teams, a Marine Safety Detachment and a Sector Field Office.

Captain Najarian is a graduate of Maine Maritime Academy and has held an Unlimited Third Assistant Engineer's license for steam and diesel vessels. She earned a Master's of Science in Fire Protection Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), as well as, an additional Master's degree from WPI in Business. She has been awarded three Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medals, two Coast Guard Commendation Medals and four Coast Guard Achievement Medals, as well as the Outstanding Military Volunteer Service Medal and several unit, team and special service awards.