Tumning, Guam — On September 30, 2013, Captain Casey White, Commander U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam, presented the Department of Homeland Security U.S. Coast Guard Certificate of Merit to, retiring Guam Fire and Rescue Chief, Captain Monterverde in recognition of notable services that have assisted greatly in furthering the aims and functions of the Coast Guard.
The public service award captures only some of the many notable contributions Captain Monteverde made to improve multi-agency search and rescue capability on Guam during 30 years leading Guam Fire and Rescue.
[L-R: Senior Chief Petty Officer T. Tregoning – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam; Mr. B. Hokenson – Guam Department of Homeland Security; Petty Officer 1st Class J. Grable – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam; Master Chief Petty Officer M. Ellis – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam; Captain S. Monteverde – Guam Fire and Rescue – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam; Mr. L. Putnam – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam; Lieutenant Commander M. Roper – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam;
Chief Petty Officer B. Dixon – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam; Captain C. White – U.S. Coast Guard Sector Guam]
The award citation is as follows:
Captain Solomon Monteverde is cited for his superior leadership, expertise, and partnership in support of inland and maritime Search and Rescue (SAR) operations. As the founding member of SAR Group Guam, Captain Monteverde brought federal, territorial, and local agencies together improving interagency cooperation and communication during SAR operations.
He was instrumental in the planning and execution of 20 multi-agency SAR exercises that tested and improved the response of rescue agencies on Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
Captain Monteverde was integral to establishing emergency protocols that improved the response notification process island-wide. When the 911 notification process was found to be insufficient during these exercises, he took a leadership role in working with agency heads to develop new protocols utilizing recommendations from both real-world and exercise scenarios.
Additionally, he championed an initiative in conjunction with the Guam Police Department that established a memorandum of understanding with the Coast Guard allowing them access to operate an 800MHz radio creating a direct link between Coast Guard and Guam public safety agencies. This change vastly improved communications and interoperability between the Coast Guard, Guam Fire and Guam Police Departments.
A recognized interagency leader, he served as the Incident Commander for over 75 terrestrial SAR incidents on Guam. He routinely acted as on-scene coordinator for Coast Guard, Navy, Police and Fire Department responders successfully integrating ground and air assets to effectively search the rough terrain of Guam’s interior.
Often faced with making rapid on-scene assessments, he displayed crucial risk management skills. His experience and subject matter expertise was consistently relied upon by the U. S. Coast Guard. Captain Monteverde’s dedication, professionalism and his commitment to the service of others are most heartily commended and are in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Coast Guard.