Dave Westerholm, former chief of the U.S. Coast Guard's Office of Response, has been named the new director of the NOAA Office of Response and Restoration, responsible for overseeing NOAA's efforts to prepare for and respond to environmental hazards caused by marine debris and the release of oil and chemicals into the nation's ocean and coastal waters. He began his position on Jan. 22.
Before joining NOAA, Westerholm was vice president and senior operations director for
maritime security, policy, and communications with General Dynamics Information Technology, where he managed $17 million in contracts supporting federal and state customers in homeland security, emergency response and strategic communications.
From 2000 to 2003, he directed all Coast Guard efforts to prepare for and respond to oil
and hazardous material releases in the U.S. coastal zone, and served as vice chair of the
multi-agency National Response Team, which responds to 30,000 incident reports each year. He retired from the Coast Guard with the rank of captain.