The national organization, USPS ®, meets the needs of all boaters, both power and sail, big and small, by providing boating educational courses to all current and prospective boaters; and by offering advanced boating education, civic service opportunities, and fraternal boating events to members. District 21 is one of 33 districts which make up the United States Power Squadrons®, a non-profit boating organization devoted to safe boating through education, and also known as America’s Boating Club ®. Our members are enthusiastic sailors and power boaters.
District 21 encompasses the eastern half of Texas and the western three-fourths of Louisiana.
Districts are made up of local squadrons. The squadrons are the “heart” of the USPS ® organization. District 21 has fourteen squadrons: ten in Texas and four in Louisiana. We have a unique natural setting in the Gulf of Mexico on the southern boundary of our district plus scenic lakes and rivers inland that make possible our boating enjoyment and adventures.
The district organization, an intermediate level between the national organization and the squadrons, is the nucleus for group action of squadrons assigned by the Governing Board to a specific district. It oversees administration of programs to educate and train members and the public; and it provides opportunities for social intercourse among members and families of assigned squadrons. The only “members” of a district are the assigned squadrons themselves. Each has voting power in district affairs. The district organization is in close contact with all national departments and committees. It is a channel for communication between national departments and squadrons, insuring uniformity of action by squadrons.
P/D/C James Foster, Jr., AP
District 21 was founded 20 October 1956. Houston Power Squadron, whose charter was granted in 1949, was a District 15 Squadron. Houston sponsored Piloting courses in Lake Charles. Lake Charles was granted a charter in 1952. Corpus Christi (name changed to Coastal Bend in November 2004, to better reflect their membership region) followed with a charter in 1955, followed by Dallas, chartered on 28 January 1956.
Twenty-six members of Houston, Lake Charles, Corpus Christi, and Dallas attended the 1956 Dstrict 15 Fall Conference in New Orleans. Chief Commander William C. Wolfmuller, N, released the four Squadrons from District 15 and approved the organization of a new District.
Houston assisted in the formation of San Antonio in 1958, Galveston Bay in 1958, and Austin in 1961. Dallas helped its neighbor to the west, and Fort Worth was granted a charter in 1958. Lake Charles provided assistance to Beaumont, chartered in 1958, Orange, chartered in 1960, and Shreveport, chartered in 1966. A Squadron called Bolivar Roads was chartered in 1963, but dissolved in 1987.
Shreveport supported Ouachita, who received a charter in 1970. Corpus Christi also helped in San Antonio, then assisted Lower Rio Grande Valley, who received a charter in 1974.
P/D/C Charles T. Ashford, SN
The District 21 flag was designed in 1998 by P/D/C Charles T. Ashford, SN from Galveston Bay Power Squadron while he was District Commander. The flag is a symbolic blend of the Texas and Louisiana state flags, and the USPS ® triangle: the Lone Star from the Texas' state flag, the Pelican from Louisiana's state flag, and the USPS Triangle of Self Education, Civic Service, and Fraternal Boating Club. The "21" references District 21. Charles enlisted the help of Susan Capon, who had an artist's eye, to arrange these symbols in an aesthetic style. (Susan is the wife of P/C Don Capon from the Fort Worth Sail and Power Squadron. They have since moved to Florida.) Several colors were explored for the flag, and red was chosen because it looked the best when the sun shined through it. The blue and white colors were chosen for "readability".
The D/21 Flag now has a gold border reflecting District 21’s 50 th Anniversary celebrated in 2006.