News Letter

NAMEPA’s Annual Safety at Sea Seminar, 2020 William M. Benkert Award for Environmental Excellence Presentation, & AMVER Awards Go VIRTUAL

May 5, 2020 The American Club’s Chairman and CEO, and Chairman of North American Marine Environment Protection Association (NAMEPA), announced the lineup for this year Safety at Sea seminar being held on May 21. The seminar will be followed by the United States Coast Guard’s 2020 William M. Benkert Award for Environmental Excellence Presentation and its AMVER Awards for volunteering ships to perform rescues at sea. This year brings many new challenges and opportunities as never before experienced. The Coronavirus has presented vast changes in how the world operates socially, economically and governmentally!” stated Hughes. Never has the issue of safety been such an important discussion for the maritime industry amidst a myriad of other industry changes. NAMEPA’s goal for this event is to assess the industry responsibilities and how best to deliver on them. We celebrate National Maritime Day by reflecting on the role the maritime industry plays economically and globally by bringing industry and governmental leaders together to discuss concerns about safety, and strategies for meeting them in this rapidly changing shipping environment: What are shipping vulnerabilities today? What are the challenges facing shipowners? How can companies mitigate risk in shipping today? What do companies need to do to accommodate remote working? Why is piracy on the upswing in 2020? What are the needs of the mariner in today’s world? Key speakers include RADM Rich Timme, Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy, USCG, Gareth Burton American Bureau of Shipping, Cynthia Hudson, CEO, HudsonCyber, Steve Kozlowski, Fairfield Chemical Carriers, and Rev. Marsh Drege, President of North American Maritime Ministry Association (NAMMA).

Following the seminar, VADM Charles Ray, Vice Commandant, will share leadership reflections on the partnership between industry and the Coast Guard.   The William M. Benkert Award for Environmental Excellence will be presented to the 2020 recipient by VADM Ray and Galia Kaplan, Program Manager.The presentation of AMVER Awards will be held for the participants of AMVER, honoring merchant ships that volunteer to be available for maritime emergency response.The AMVER Awards Program was inaugurated in 1971 to recognize those vessels which regularly participate in the AMVER system.  Ships flying the various colored AMVER pennants are a constant reminder on the oceans of that ship and company commitment to safety at sea. Prominent display of AMVER Certificates, found in company boardrooms, corporate office reception areas and on the bulkhead of a ship bridge or wardroom, attest to the prestige accorded with these awards.  VADM Charles Ray and AMVER Program Manager Ben Strong will “present” the recognition flags and certificates to the participants in the ceremony. There is no fee to attend this event, but donations are gratefully accepted.  Like many non-profit organizations in these tumultuous times, NAMEPA is reliant upon its supporters to contribute to our operational costs.  We are grateful to those who share our vision and support our work.To register for this virtual event, or for more information, please go to