The Portraits


U.S. Coast Guard, Retired • Chief

Retired Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Nicole Knowles Cimino was born in San Diego, CA, the second daughter to a Navy submariner father and a police officer mother. After completing 5 years of active duty in the Coast Guard, Nicole transitioned to the Coast Guard Reserve and attended the University of Washington, earning a B.S. in Nursing. As a walk-on to the university’s rowing team, Nicole won a Silver Medal at the 2008 Pac-10 Championships. After graduation, Nicole began her nursing career at Harborview Medical Center, the Level 1 Trauma Center for 5 states. Nicole served as a Burns/Pediatrics/Plastics Nurse and then in the Emergency Department. She was selected as the Coast Guard’s 2016 Reserve Enlisted Person of the Year in 2016 and was meritoriously advanced to Chief Petty Officer.

Nicole currently works as a Medical Cardiac ICU nurse and has been part of the Covid-19 care staff, caring for critically ill patients from the Washington State area. As part of the front-line hands-on force, she is implementing new “outside the box” strategies for patient care and at the same time dealing with medical supply shortages and new medication trials. In addition, Nicole is an Advanced Cardiac Life Support and Trauma Nurse Core Course Instructor. She lives in Lake Stevens, WA with her husband, Gabriel, an Air Force Veteran and Deputy Sheriff, her stepson Alex and two dogs. When not working they enjoy travelling, rafting, hiking, archery and wood working.