Main Content

Group Commander

Lieutenant Colonel Harold Coghlan

Lt Colonel Harold Coghlan is assigned as the Commander of Alabama Wing’s Group 2, the Southern Group area. Lt Col Coghlan has been a lifelong member of the Civil Air Patrol, starting as a Cadet in 1974. He has held multiple staff positions of increasing responsibilities, in various unit levels, such as Squadron Operations, Communication, Emergency Services, Cadet Programs, Standardization and Evaluation, and Deputy Commander. Additionally, he has served at the Wing level in the Instructor, Check Pilot, Check Pilot Examiner, and Director of Standards and Evaluation. He also served as the Wing Director of Safety for over 12 years, achieving a national record of overseeing a safety program while more than 44,500 flight hours were flown in highly demanding conditions (such as overwater reconnaissance flights in support of Operation “Deep Water Horizon”) with no accidents, which helped him receive recognition as the 2006 CAP Safety Officer of the Year, receiving the coveted Turner Safety Award for both himself, as well as another for the Alabama Wing. Lt Col Coghlan still wears multiple hats in CAP.  In addition to leading Group 2, he performs duties as Assistant Wing Director of Safety and Assistant Wing Standardization and Evaluation Officer.


In his life outside CAP, Lt Col Coghlan is an airline Captain, operating jets in national and international flights. He has safely flown over 25,000 hours in a wide variety of aircraft, from piston aircraft, to jet fighters and transports, to helicopters and airliners.

Lt Col Coghlan is a retired military pilot and Officer, having served over 39 years both Active duty and Reserve duty in a wide variety of assignments flying with combat, rescue and training units, flying over 25 different types of military aircraft, from supersonic jet fighters, to reconnaissance jets, to military transports, to utility, rescue and attack/special operations helicopters.

Lt Col Coghlan thoroughly enjoys volunteering with the Civil Air Patrol, conducting search and rescue operations, working with cadets and training pilots. He stands with an open door policy, always ready to help his fellow members.

© 2021 Civil Air Patrol. All rights reserved.