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FACE OF DEFENSE: US Coast Guard honors Robert Selby with its George Gray Award

 for Artistic Excellence during Coast Guard Art Program event in New York City

Partnership_Leendert van der Pool
Image pictured is the 2018 George Gray Award winner, "Partnership" by Leendert van der Pool

RELATED: Face of Defense

WASHINGTON — Robert Selby of Colton, New York, received the George Gray Award for Artistic Excellence at the Coast Guard Art Program (COGAP) event in New York City Wednesday.

Selby's oil painting "Guardians of the Puerto Rico Coast," is a four-foot-long triptych of scenes from the artist's deployment on board the Coast Guard Cutter Texanos in the Caribbean last year. The crew depicted in the center panel is aboard the small boat of the Texanos as the crew transfers illegal migrants to the Dominican Navy off the coast of the Dominican Republic. The left side panel depicts a male servicemember standing watch as the Texanos exits San Juan Harbor and the right side panel depicts a female servicemember standing watch as the cutter approaches Mona Island.

"This year marks the 38th anniversary of the Coast Guard Art Program. Since the program's inception, artists have volunteered their time and talent to capture the vital contributions the U.S. Coast Guard makes to our nation in their wonderful artworks," said Commandant of the Coast Guard Adm. Karl Schultz, who attended the event to accept 40 new pieces of art into the extensive collection and to present the George Gray Award to Selby.

The works of art — all donated by COGAP's talented cadre of member artists — educate diverse audiences about the Coast Guard's people and its work as it ensures the nation's security at home and abroad and executes its 11 statutory missions. These missions include search and rescue, protection of marine life, illegal drug interdiction, aids to navigation, patrols, inspections and many more. COGAP artwork is exhibited at museums around the country and is displayed in the offices of members of Congress, Cabinet secretaries and other senior government officials both here and abroad.

The 2019 collection of 40 framed artworks by 30 member artists will be on view from June 23 to July 6, 2019, at the Salmagundi Club, a New York art and cultural center and co-sponsor of COGAP since the program's inception.

Following the exhibition at the Salmagundi Club, the 2019 collection will be displayed at Federal Hall National Memorial starting July 10 and will run through September 2019. The memorial is located at 26 Wall Street in New York City, diagonally across from the New York Stock Exchange.

You can find out more about COGAP, including how to become one of the contributing artists, at Learn about the Salmagundi Cub at

published | June 28, 2019