Bill Coate- Colonel USMC (ret) is a Montana native, raised in Forsyth. After graduating from Forsyth High School, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps. He served four years on active duty as an Enlisted Man and returned to Montana to study history at Eastern Montana College. Coate was commissioned as an officer in the Marine Corps after he graduated and served in the Marine Corps for 30 years, retiring at the rank of Colonel. After serving a tour as an aircrat maintenance officer, he completed Amphibious Warfare School where he became an intelligence officer in the SIGINT field.
He then served as Commanding Officer of Company C Marine Support Battalion, Guam. He was the transferred to 1st Radio Battalion, Kaneohe Bay, where he served in company command billets until his transfer to Canberra, Australia, where he served as a liaison officer with the Australian Defence Force. During this time he deployed with the ADF to Operation WARDEN, a United Nations peace enforcement operation in the East Timor.
During 2000-2001 he attended U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS. He then served as the assistant chief of staff G2 MARFORRES until 2002 when he received orders to USCENTCOM to become the SIGINT collection manager. During Operation IRAQI FREEDOM he served as the Iraq all source Intelligence Team Chief in Qatar. He then returned to Tampa for a short period before he was sent to Baghdad to establish the National Intelligence Center. He finished his military service as the Commandant at the Marine Corps Military Intelligence Training Center at Quantico, VA.