Rear Admiral William J. Ecker assumed duties as Commander, Fifth Coast Guard District on 22 June 1994. The Fifth District encompasses a six-state mid-Atlantic coastal region including Pennsylvania,. With 2,350 active duty members, 1,200 reserves, 124 civilians and 6,800 auxiliarists, this district performs the full range of Coast Guard missions; that is, maritime safety, environmental protection, maritime law enforcement and defense operations.
Admiral Ecker's previous assignment was Chief, Office of Navigation Safety and Waterway Services where he was the Program Director for search and rescue; recreational boating safety; short ranch aids to navigation; radio aids to navigation; vessel traffic services; bridge administration; domestic and polar ice operations; waterways management; consumer affairs; and the Coast Guard Auxiliary, a civilian volunteer force of about 40,000.
His first flag assignment in 1989 was a Commander, Second Coast Guard District in St. Louis, where he directed Coast Guard operations on more than 6,500 miles of inland navigable waterways in all or parts of 22 mid-continent states.
Rear Admiral Ecker graduated from the Coast Guard Academy in 1960 and served in a variety of seagoing and shore assignments during his career. He served on Coast Guard cutters Westwind, Winnebago, Resolute, and Mellon. The tour on CGC Mellon included deployment to Vietnam.
Shore assignments included duty as assistant professor in the engineering department at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy; Chief, Information and Analysis Staff in the Office of Merchant Marine Safety, Washington, D.C.; Commanding Officer of the Marine Inspection Office, New Orleans, La; Commanding Officer of the Marine Safety Office in Mobile, Ala.; Chief of Operations at the Ninth District in Cleveland, Ohio; Deputy Chief in the Office of Marine Safety, Security, and Environmental Protection, Washington, D.C.; and Chief of Staff of the Fifth Coast Guard District, in Portsmouth, Va.
Rear Adm. Ecker's personal decorations include the Legion of Merit (2), the Meritorious Service Medal (3), the Coast Guard Commendation Medal (4), the Navy Commendation Medal and the Commandant's Letter of Commendation Ribbon.
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Rear Adm. Ecker is married to the former Anne Parker D. They have three children: Jennifer, Michael, and Julie.