The Coast Guard Aviation Training Center (ATC) in Mobile, Alabama is a multi-mission unit, acting as the Coast Guard's aviation and capabilities development center, as well as an operational air station. Training is conducted to qualify Coast Guard pilots in the MH-60 "Jayhawk", the MH-65 "Dolphin" , the HC-130 Hercules, the HC-130J Hercules, and the HC-144 "Ocean Sentry." All pilots initially trained at ATC return once a year for a one week proficiency course in their designated airframe. Serving within the Coast Guard's Force Readiness Command's Training Division (FC-T), the ATC Mobile evaluation center is responsible for ensuring that Coast Guard aviation forces are using the best equipment and tactics to successfully complete all required missions. The Operations Department, flying the HC-144A Ocean Sentry, is a segment within the ATC command that conducts traditional Coast Guard air station missions including Search and Rescue, Homeland Security, and Environmental Protection. The Operations Department operates under the tactical control of the Eighth Coast Guard District and has area of responsibility that extends from the Louisiana/Texas border to the eastern edge of the Florida panhandle.
Commanding Officer: Captain Christopher J. Hulser
Captain Hulser is the 21st Commanding Officer of Coast Guard Aviation Training Center (ATC) Mobile, AL. He is responsible for all aspects of Coast Guard pilot and aircrew training and standardization for 26 Air Stations and 43 flight deck equipped Coast Guard Cutters. Additionally he commands the Coast Guard’s Aviation Capabilities Development Center, provides 24/7 fixed-wing operational response, and directs helicopter disaster surge response for America’s Gulf Coast. Captain Hulser is a 23-year veteran of the US Coast Guard, and a 1997 graduate of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
Captain Hulser’s first assignment was aboard the 270’ Cutter SPENCER (Boston, MA) where he performed CG Law Enforcement, Fisheries, and Search and Rescue missions. Next, he earned his “Wings of Gold” at US Navy Flight School (Pensacola, FL). His first aviation duty assignment was Air Station San Francisco where he served as a Helicopter Aircraft Commander.
In 2004, he was selected as the Coast Guard’s Exchange Pilot to the Royal Canadian Air Force and transferred to British Columbia, Canada. During his last year on exchange he served as the Pilot Leader in Canada’s 442 Rescue Squadron, an honor never before conveyed to a foreign officer. After returning, LT Hulser headed to Miami, FL for duty as a Department Head and Aircraft Commander.
In 2010 he was selected as a Presidential Public Service Fellow and earned his Master’s degree from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. At Harvard he earned the distinction of being named the Lucius N. Littauer Fellow for academic and leadership accomplishment. After Harvard, LCDR Hulser served as the Military Aide to the 24th Commandant for two years until receiving orders “back to the fleet” as Chief Pilot at Air Station Houston. While at Houston, he was promoted to the rank of Commander, and the unit’s Executive Officer.
In 2015 CDR Hulser attended Senior Service School at the US Marine Corps War College, or “MCWAR.” He graduated with honors and was named the class Distinguished Graduate. Following War College, CDR Hulser was assigned to US NORTHCOM (J3 - Domestic Operations), to conduct Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA).
From 2018-2020, CAPT Hulser returned to CG Headquarters as the Acting Director of Military Personnel and the Coast Guard Reserve (CG-13). He was responsible for the development and oversight of military personnel policy programs to attract, recruit, train, and retain the Coast Guard’s 55K person workforce.
He is married to Leslie (Gordon) Hulser, originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Captain and Mrs. Hulser have one daughter, Alexandra, who is 16 years old.
The Aviation Training Center is committed to be the model Coast Guard aviation and support unit. We balance the needs of our people, our organizational commanders, and the public, in our plans, policies, and operations. When making decisions, we first consider how our actions will affect our people, by identifying, eliminating or minimizing the risks associated with those decisions in order to ensure mission safety. We recognize that if we support, respect, and challenge our people, they will deliver superior service and continuous improvement.
The mission of the Aviation Training Center (ATC) is to produce mission ready aircrews and develop aviation capabilities. We provide core training for rotary wing and fixed wing pilots, rescue swimmers and aircrews for air stations Coast Guard wide. We also serve as the Coast Guard's aviation capabilities development center. We provide direct aviation support to Coast Guard Atlantic Area and the Eighth Coast Guard District. We provide health and administrative services to military families throughout the Mobile metropolitan area, in order to enhance their ability to support Coast Guard operations. We strive to ensure the safe accomplishment of all mission tasking by implementing Coast Guard Safety and Health Programs that provide all employees and their families a safe and healthful environment.