Great Lakes Shipmate of the Week: BM3 Jordan Clarke, Station Marquette, Mich.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jordan Clarke ensures Station Marquette's ice rescue gear is properly stored and ready for use.  U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jordan Clarke ensures Station Marquette’s ice rescue gear is properly stored and ready for use.
U.S. Coast Guard photo.

A quick glance at the crew assigned to Coast Guard Station Marquette, Michigan, reveals a unit full of dedicated professionals ready to execute any of the Coast Guard’s missions at a moment’s notice. Among them is Petty Officer 3rd class Jordan Clarke, a boatswain’s mate, who has distinguished himself through his proficiency and selflessness.Clarke reported to Station Marquette in 2011 from boatswain mate “A” School in Yorktown, Virginia. Prior to “A” school, Clarke served for two years aboard Coast Guard Cutter Seneca home ported in Boston. After reporting to the station, he quickly certified as a communications watchstander, ice rescue instructor, boarding officer, 45-foot response boat coxswain, and 25-foot response coxswain.

Additionally, Clarke volunteered to serve as rescue and survival systems petty officer and navigation petty officer, two challenging and time intensive collateral duties. Not only has he effectively managed all of his duties – he has excelled at completing them.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jordan Clarke instructs ice rescuers on how to properly walk a conscious victim into the sling on the rescue board used for recovering people in the water or on the ice. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Jordan Clarke instructs ice rescuers on how to properly walk a conscious victim into the sling on the rescue board used for recovering people in the water or on the ice.
U.S. Coast Guard photo.

A testament to his hard work and proficiency came from the station’s outstanding performance during its two most recent boat inspections: their ready for operations inspection and a standardization team visit, both of which acutely evaluate a unit’s rescue and survival systems program, crew proficiency and training program among other factors.Beyond his proficiency in the boatswain mate rating, Clarke has acquired the skills necessary to become certified as a 45-foot response boat engineer, a position normally held by a fireman or machinery technician. Clarke recognized that there was a shortage in certified engineers and took it upon himself to work toward becoming certified. Faced with the adversity of having only two certified engineers and being short two personnel from a small 15 person unit, Clarke knew he had to continue to perform his primary duties as a boatswain mate while studying and performing the practical factors to become a certified engineer. Not only did he pass his final board, but also, he excelled in all aspects.

“Clarke’s diligence and determination to help out his unit and his shipmates was apparent in the knowledge and proficiency on his response boat engineer of the watch board. He was nearly flawless on complex questions and set the bar high for future EOW qualifications boards,” said petty officer 2nd class Chuck Osborne, a fellow small boat engineer.

Clarke has also excelled in his role as a unit ice rescue trainer. After certifying at the Center of Ice Excellence he has been ambitiously educating and training members of this unit as well as partner agencies which include: Michigan Department of Natural Resources conservation officers, county search and rescue, and numerous local fire departments.

“Clarke is an excellent trainer. His articulation mixed with his upbeat personality makes him an excellent representative of the Coast Guard during those training sessions,” said Chief Petty Officer Patrick Brown.

Clarke’s hard work at Station Marquette has been a contributing factor of the overall success of the unit. It is because of the selfless contributions of members like him that the crew enjoys coming to work to carry out the Coast Guard’s missions on the “Superior” of the Great Lakes.

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