NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS – Lt. Col. Jo’Andrew D. Cousins has been appointed Civil Air Patrol’s national chief diversity officer, Maj. Gen. Chuck Carr, national commander, announced today.
As national chief diversity officer – a volunteer position created by CAP’s National Board in August 2011 – Cousins will report directly to Carr and will work with Don Rowland, CAP executive director, and other leaders in the organization to create an operational/tactical plan for the implementation of the strategic goal of ensuring that CAP is a diverse and inclusive organization.
Now a U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant commander, Cousins joined CAP in 1990 and rose to the rank of cadet lieutenant colonel. In 1996, after moving from the Coast Guard Reserve to active duty, he transitioned to CAP's senior member program.
When asked about his appointment as national chief diversity officer, he said, “In this new role, I hope to do two things: First, help CAP tell its story on how it helps America's youth, and second, ensure CAP is a diverse and inclusive organization.
"Everyone has a story,” he added. “Every CAP volunteer who helped mentor me as a cadet and counseled me as a senior member had a part in developing my desire to join the military and become a pilot.
During his active-duty Coast Guard assignments, Cousins has served in the Delaware, Florida, Puerto Rico, North Carolina and Massachusetts CAP wings. Currently assigned to Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C., he is active in CAP’s Virginia Wing and serves as the Burke Composite Squadron’s deputy commander for seniors.
Cousins has more than 17 years of service in the Coast Guard and has held instructor ratings in both the HU25 Guardian jet and C-130J Super Hercules. He also holds Federal Aviation Administration Airline Transport Pilot and Certified Flight Instructor – Instrument (CFII) ratings.
He earned his master’s degree in public administration from Harvard Kennedy School in 2011 and a master’s in national security and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval War College in 2006. He resides in Fairfax Station, Va., and is married to Christin Carothers, a practicing attorney in Maryland.