Training Center TRACEN Petaluma
Two Rock Training Center
The Training Center operates no less than 10 schools offering 50 courses to approximately 4000 students a year. In addition to Coast Guard military and civilian employees, the Training Center also provides training to international students. Located in the rolling hills of the Two Rock Valley, this large training command provides apprentice level training for seven enlisted career fields and manages CG-wide training in leadership and Total Quality Management for personnel at all levels of the organization. The unit provides performance technology courses in basic instructor skills and course designing skills. The Training Center also provides courses for emergency medical technicians, maritime law enforcement, and computer operation and management. The Training Center consists of over 800 acres with 219 buildings, including 129 family units, a fully staffed clinic, a chapel, a small police and fire department, and over 200,000 square feet of training facilities.
In 1942, the Army purchased Two Rock Ranch and built a Communications Station. The station's location was ideal for monitoring Japanese communications during World War II. Operations at the station were top-secret.
During the Vietnam War, the station added training to it's mission. Portions of the base were transformed into a Vietnamese village to train troops headed for Vietnam. In the late 1960's, satellites and other technological advances made the listening post obsolete and preparations were made to close the base.
With the Vietnam War in progress, the Coast Guard faced increased training demands. The Training Center at Governor's Island in New York became overcrowded, so the Coast Guard started looking for a suitable site for a new training center. In the spring of 1971, The Coast Guard learned of the closing of Two Rock Ranch Station. Officials visited the property and were impressed with the station. Although the California Highway Patrol and an Indian group were interested in the land, the Coast Guard was awarded the station. On July 1, the Coast Guard relieved the Army and took possession of the station.
Soon after taking over the property, it was decided that the name "Two Rock Ranch" was not suitable for a Coast Guard Base. In spite of interest in retaining "Two Rock" as part of the new name, the base was renamed Coast Guard Training Center, Petaluma. Interestingly, one reason Petaluma was chosen over Two Rock was that Petaluma appeared on many maps whereas Two Rock did not. This was considered important for Coast Guard members who would be trying to locate the base when traveling to it.
Immediately after the training center opened, Subsistence Specialist school began training Coast Guard cooks. Soon after that, Storekeeper school opened. Approximately 6 months later the Radioman School opened. In April of 1972, less than a year after it opened, the base was fully loaded with students.
The nearest town to the Training Center is Petaluma, the second largest and southernmost city of Sonoma County. Started as a riverbank hunting camp in the 1850's, Petaluma quickly grew into an agricultural, trade and industrial hub that by 1918 claimed the title of "Egg Basket of the World". Petaluma was the richest city of it's size in the United States during the 1920's partly because of the cheap transportation for agricultural products offered by the Petaluma River. Today Petaluma still retains some of it's agricultural flavor, but it is becoming a nice bedroom community of the Bay area job market. Downtown has been renovated and cafe's abound for the weekend antique shoppers who flock to the wide assortment of shops. Housing in Petaluma is a mixture. Newer homes on the east side of Hwy 101 and older ones on the west. Filmmakers especially like the older, well kept west side for it's quaint, all-American looks. The city has had parts in movies since the 1940s, including "Basic Instinct","Peggy Sue Got Married", and "American Graffiti"