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Admiral Thad W. Allen is a senior fellow at the RAND Corporation. Allen joined RAND in October 2010.

Allen became the 23rd Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard in May 2006 and led a massive effort to update the service's antiquated command and logistics organizations and address future maritime challenges facing the nation. Prior to this command, while serving as the service's chief of staff, Allen was the principal federal official overseeing the response to Hurricane Katrina and recovery efforts in the Gulf Coast region.

Allen held many command posts throughout his Coast Guard career, including command of the Coast Guard's Atlantic forces in its response to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. In the months prior to his retirement from the Coast Guard in June 2010, Allen served as National Incident Commander for the federal government's response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, one of the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history, and he continued to serve in this role as a civilian.

Allen received his bachelor's degree from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, a Master of Public Administration degree from The George Washington University, and a master's degree in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management. He is the recipient of two Homeland Security Distinguished Service Medals, the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, three Coast Guard Distinguished Service Medals, a Legion of Merit Medal, and three Meritorious Service Medals.

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