Office of Coast Survey
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

June 21, 2017

Hello Coast Survey,

I am delighted to be your guest writer for this issue of the Coast Survey newsletter and thank you for the opportunity. World Hydrography Day occurs annually on the summer solstice, June 21. This year’s theme is a broadly focused statement of “mapping our seas, oceans and waterways - more important than ever.” This charge to the maritime community is meant to draw attention to the fact that "the depth of barely 10% of the world’s oceans and about 50% of the world’s coastal waters has been measured directly" (IHO, 2017). As I look back at the past few years, I find it inspiring that Coast Survey has maneuvered and adapted our products and services—already hard at work in addressing this global initiative.

This year has been a standout with the release of four position papers that holistically embody the spirit and drive that all of Coast Survey has been shifting towards over the past few years. The National Charting Plan, Unmanned Systems Roadmap, External Source Data policy, and Coast Survey’s Hydrographic plan entitled Coast Survey’s Role in Global Ocean Mapping, truly represent the mission focus of all four divisions within Coast Survey. The topics and ideas proposed in these documents remain true to a consistent Coast Survey message as we prepare to release the new website, write talking points for congressional outreach, design 1-pagers, and interface with the stakeholders and customers of our products and services.

As the acting Deputy Hydrographer, I have worked to standardize and provide consistent messaging both internally and externally to NOAA while leveraging these forward leaning initiatives—ensuring they resonate with various audiences. Taken all together, the work of Coast Survey has garnered tremendous support from NOS providing more visibility with stakeholders and on the Hill. As a result, we have had congressional quotes on our blog, several letters of support from stakeholders to congress on our behalf, and an upcoming all-interested staff briefing on the Hill (in cooperation with the Congressional PORTS Caucus) with opening remarks from Representative Alan Lowenthal (CA-47). The initiative and creative talents of the Coast Survey workforce constantly impresses me and it has been my pleasure working with you all this past year.

Have a safe and fun summer,

Rachel Medley
Deputy Hydrographer (acting), Office of Coast Survey