CAPT Andrew R. Bender


CAPT Bender is responsible for Coast Guard operations across the Heartland, including all or parts of 11 states and 2,200+ miles of commercially navigable waterways along the Upper Mississippi, Missouri and Illinois River basins. In his duties, he leads over 270 Active Duty, Reserve, and civilian personnel and 800 Auxiliarists, including five 65’/75’ river tenders, three Marine Safety Detachments, and one multi-mission small boat station to promote maritime safety, security and environmental protection, while facilitating the river system’s $42B commercial element. CAPT Bender serves as Captain of the Port, Officer-in-Charge Marine Inspection, Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator, Federal Maritime Security Coordinator and Federal On-Scene Coordinator for all Sector UMR missions.

CAPT Bender’s previous assignment was at the Towing Vessel National Center of Expertise in Paducah, KY, where he played a significant role in the implementation of “Subchapter M”, which to date has resulted in the certification of over 5,000 towing vessels operating nationwide. In this capacity, he was responsible for the approval and oversight of third party organizations working on the Coast Guard’s behalf as a force multiplier to ensure compliance of the over 3,500 vessels participating in Subchapter M’s TSMS Compliance Option. He championed and co-authored dozens of national policies to ensure smooth and consistent application of this significant regulation, led curriculum development and incorporation of towing vessel instruction for the Marine Inspector Course at Yorktown, VA, and led the transition of the training to a web-based platform available to thousands of towing vessel stakeholders.

A 2000 Coast Guard Academy graduate, his first assignment was afloat as Operations’ Officer aboard CGC SWEETGUM in Mobile, AL. Following the underway assignment, CAPT Bender served at Marine Safety Office New Orleans from 2002 to 2006 in a variety of safety and security positions, including leading the Domestic Inspection’s Branch following Hurricane Katrina and serving as a key member of the Marine Safety Office to Sector transition team. He was then assigned to Sector Charleston where he served as Division Chief for both Domestic Inspections and Investigations.

In 2011, following Industrial and Systems Engineering post-graduate work, CAPT Bender was assigned to the Human Systems Integration Branch at Coast Guard Headquarters, Washington, D.C., where he served as a Manpower and Personnel Analyst for major acquisitions including the National Security Cutter, Fast Response Cutter, and HC-144 Ocean Sentry Programs.

From 2014 to 2017, he served as the Prevention Department Head at Sector Key West, FL, where he oversaw maritime safety and security spanning hundreds of miles of navigable waterways throughout the Keys, including a fleet of nearly 1,000 commercial vessels and the preservation of over 400 aids to navigation.

CAPT Bender’s personal awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, five CG Commendation Medals, and two Commandant’s Letter of Commendation. His education includes a M.S. in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Florida, a B.S. in Operations Research from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, and certificates in the field of Acquisition Project Management.

Originally from Mobile, Alabama, he and his wife have two children.

CDR Daniel J. Every


Commander (CDR) Every is the Deputy Sector Commander of Sector Upper Mississippi River (UMR) and is responsible for Coast Guard operations in an 11-state area of responsibility that includes 2,200 miles of commercially navigable waterways on the Upper Mississippi, Missouri, and Illinois Rivers and tributary waters.  He leads 270 Active Duty, Reserve, and civilian personnel, 800 Auxiliary members, five Inland River Buoy Tender cutters, three Marine Safety Detachments, and a multi-mission small boat station to promote maritime safety, security and environmental protection while facilitating over $42 billion in economic activity per year on the inland river system.  He serves as the alternate Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator, Federal Maritime Security Coordinator, Federal On-Scene Coordinator, Officer-in-Charge Marine Inspection, and Captain of the Port for all Sector missions.  He previously served as the Prevention Department Head at Sector UMR (2020-2022) and was responsible for oversight of the Coast Guard’s Marine Safety missions.  His past operational assignments include Sector Sault Sainte Marie (2015-2018), Sector UMR (2012-2015), Sector New York (2009-2012), and Sector San Francisco (2006-2009).  He also previously served in a special assignment in the Department of Homeland Security’s Management Directorate, Office of the Chief Financial Officer, Program Analysis and Evaluation Division (2018-2020) where he was the lead resource analyst for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, lead performance analyst for the U.S. Secret Service and U.S. Coast Guard, and lead assistant to the DHS Evaluation Officer.

CDR Every graduated from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, NY in 2005 with a B.S. in Maritime Operations and Technology, an unlimited Third Mate Merchant Marine Officer License, and five Qualified Member of the Engine Department endorsements.  He also earned an M.S. in International Transportation Management, With Honors, from SUNY Maritime College in 2012, and a Graduate Certificate in Public Management from the University of Missouri’s The Truman School of Government and Public Affairs in 2021.  His military awards include the Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medal, Commendation Medal (5), and Achievement Medal.  He was also awarded the Congressmen James Sener Award, Platinum Level, for leading 2017’s “finest, most professional marine investigation that positively influenced marine safety.”  In addition, he finished hiking the 2,200-mile-long Appalachian Trail in 1994 at the age of 12 and earned the Presidential Sports Award for Endurance Walking.

Originally from Easton, NH, CDR Every is married to Shannon Every, née Sharp, of Orinda, CA, and they live in Kirkwood, MO with their 10-year-old son, Jack, and rescue dog, Ruthie.  He enjoys spending time with family, camping, hiking, fishing, reading, antiquing, and studying the U.S. and international maritime industry.  He is also passionate about developing and helping youth become their very best future selves by serving as a volunteer Cub Scout leader.

Senior Chief David A. Knapp


Senior Chief Knapp assumed responsibilities as the Command Senior Chief of Sector Upper Mississippi River on May 26th, 2022. His primary responsibility is to advise the Commanding Officer of Sector Upper Mississippi River on issues and initiatives pertaining to all Coast Guard members and their families within the Sector’s Area of Responsibility. Sector Upper Mississippi River includes three Marine Safety Detachment’s, five river tenders, and one station to promote maritime safety, secruity, and environmental protection while facilitaing the inland river system’s $42B commerical element. This area encompasses 11 states and 2,200 miles of commercially navigable waterways.

Senior Chief Knapp enlisted in the Army Reserves in 1996. He then enlisted into the Coast Guard Reserves in 2003 wherein he tranistioned to Active Duty in 2006. Previous assignments include TRACEN Cape May, NJ, Aviation Detachment Guantanamo Bay Cuba, TRACEN Petaluma, CA, Base Honolulu, HI, Integrated Support Command Alameda, CA, Marine Safety Center Washington D.C., and Harbor Defense Command Unit 205.

Senior Chief Knapp holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Organizational Management from Ashford University. He also holds an Associates Applied Science Degree in Supply Chain Management from Thomas Edison State University. In addition he earned a certification as a Certified Defense Financial Manager (CDFM).

Senior Chief Knapp is a proud graduate of the Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Academy Class 212 and the Coast Guard Senior Enlisted Leadership Course Class 89.

His personal awards include the Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medal, five Coast Guard Commendation Medals, Army Commendation Medal, two Coast Guard Achievement Medals, Army Achievement Medal, and three Letter of Commendation Ribbons with the Operational Distinguishing Device. In addition to various other personal and unit level awards, he wears the Permanent Company Commander Insignia.