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Robert Theodore Nelson (born March 6, 1936) is a retired vice admiral in the United States Coast Guard who served as the 18th Vice Commandant from 1992 to 1994. He was previously Chief of Staff of the United States Coast Guard, Commanding Officer at Coast Guard Headquarters, Washington, D.C., Commander of the Second Coast Guard District, and Chief of the Office of Navigation Safety and Waterway Services at Coast Guard Headquarters. He graduated from the United States Coast Guard Academy in 1958. He also is an alumnus of George Washington University.[1][2]

Robert T. Nelson
Vadm nelson uscg.jpg
Born (1936-03-06) March 6, 1936 (age 83)
East Liverpool, Ohio, U.S.
Allegiance United States
Service/branchUnited States Coast Guard
Years of servicec. 1958 – 1994
RankVice admiral
Commands heldVice Commandant of the United States Coast Guard

His awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, two Legions of Merit, the Bronze Star with Combat Device, two Meritorious Service Medals, Coast Guard Commendation and Achievement Medals with Operational Distinguishing Device. He is also authorized to wear the Cutterman's Insignia.[1] Born in East Liverpool, Ohio in 1936, Nelson is married to Patricia Bennett, originally of Youngstown, Ohio, and has three children, two daughters and a son.[3]


  1. ^ a b "Biographical Sketch – Vice Admiral Robert T. Nelson" (PDF). U.S. Coast Guard. Retrieved 2014-03-22.
  2. ^ Kenneth Winterberger (20 October 2011). "Vice Admiral Robert T. Nelson Vice Commandant United States Coast Guard" (PDF). Retrieved 2015-09-11.
  3. ^ United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (1992). Nomination of Rear Admiral Robert T. Nelson to be Vice Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard: hearing before the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, United States Senate, One Hundred Second Congress, second session, April 8, 1992. 4. U.S. G.P.O. ISBN 9780160391163. Retrieved 2015-09-11.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
Military offices
Preceded by
Martin H. Daniell
Vice Commandant of the United States Coast Guard
Succeeded by
Arthur E. Henn