Robert Allan, Exec. Chairman of the Board
Robert Allen, Ltd.
Robert G. Allan P.Eng. is the Executive Chairman of Robert Allan Ltd. of Vancouver, B.C., the most senior (est. 1930) naval architecture consulting firm in Canada. Since graduating with honours from the University of Glasgow with a B.Sc. in Naval Architecture in 1971, he has been designing specialized commercial workboats of all types, especially high-performance tugboats for tanker escort and offshore terminal operations. Succeeding his father as President of Robert Allan Ltd. in 1981, he has led the company to a position of international prominence in the field. He has been internationally recognized by peers as a leading authority on the subject of escort tug and workboat design and has received several major international awards for this work. He is the author of numerous papers and articles on the subject of tug and workboat design, and a contributor to major textbooks on the same subject.
Sarah Branch, Director of Government Relations
Offshore Marine Service Association
With experience in both government service and the private sector for 12 years, Sarah Branch has served as the Director of Government Relations with the Offshore Marine Service Association (OMSA) since 2007. OMSA is the national trade association that represents companies that provide services and supplies in support of the domestic offshore oil and gas industry. OMSA advocates the interests of 250 companies to Congress and state and federal entities. Sarah helps develop the association’s political advocacy strategy with federal officials, policymakers and regulatory agencies. She analyzes legislation and domestic and international maritime regulations to determine the impact on members.
Prior to her position at OMSA, Sarah served five years as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Coast Guard. During her service, Sarah was stationed aboard a 270 foot cutter as a Deck Watch Officer, conducting search and rescue, counter-drug and counter-migrant operations in the Caribbean. Following her tour at sea, Sarah worked in the Waterways/Port Security and Western Rivers Divisions of the Eighth Coast Guard District in New Orleans and served as the Aide to Rear Admiral Robert Duncan, who was responsible for all rescue and recovery efforts during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.
Susan Hayman, Vice President, HSQE and External Affairs
Susan Hayman is Vice President, HSQE and External Affairs for Foss Maritime. She is a graduate of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and Harvard Business School. Susan began her maritime career as a Third Mate for Exxon Shipping Company and has been in the maritime industry her entire career. She worked for Matson Navigation Company in various capacities including Manager of Customer Service then Operations Manager and Area Manager for Southern California. In 1998 she left Matson to join APL as Director, Terminal Operations and was promoted to Vice President of Global Terminal Operations before moving to London as Vice President of Operations for Europe and then to Vienna as Managing Director, Central Europe. In 2002 she became APL’s first Vice President of Global Security. Susan was recalled to Active Duty as a Commander in the Navy prior to joining Foss Maritime in 2006 as Vice President, HSQE.
Peter Lauridsen, Marine Safety Consultant
Passenger Vessle Association
Peter Lauridsen is the Regulatory Affairs Consultant for the Passenger Vessel Association (PVA). The Passenger Vessel Association is the principal trade association for the U.S. flagged, U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) inspected passenger vessel industry. Its 600 member companies represent ferry, overnight, dinner, excursion, sightseeing, eco-tourism, and unique experience operations as well as the businesses that design, build, outfit, and service the passenger vessel fleet.
Peter Lauridsen is a retired Coast Guard officer. During his twenty-nine year career he spent more than twenty years in marine safety, security, and environmental protection program assignments ranging from the waterfront, to the district level, to headquarters. His last assignment was as Deputy Chief of Marine Safety, Security, and Environmental Protection.
Since retiring from active duty in 1988 Peter Lauridsen has spent more than twenty five years sharing his experience with the members of the Association in the advancement of the domestic passenger vessel industry. Captain Lauridsen is a 1959 graduate of the Coast Guard Academy.
Robert Socha, Executive Vice President Marketing and Sales
Bollinger Shipyards, Inc.
Robert A. Socha – Executive Vice President of Marketing and Sales of Bollinger Shipyards since January 1999. Mr. Socha oversees and coordinates the Sales and Marketing activities of the Bollinger organization, and is a member of the Executive Board. He is involved with new construction, repair, conversion and ancillary services of the company’s twelve locations.
Previously with Tidewater Marine from 1981 to 1999, Mr. Socha held the position of Assistant Division Manager - Domestic Towing Division located in Harvey Louisiana, and Sales Manager for Tidewater International, based out of Dubai, United Arab Emirates and Lagos, Nigeria. Mr. Socha was Sales Manager for Zapata Gulf Marine, North America Division, at the time of the Tidewater acquisition.
Mr. Socha received a Bachelor of Business Administration from Sam Houston State University in 1979. He is currently an active member of the following professional organizations: Offshore Marine Service Association, Western Dredging Association, The Propeller Club of New Orleans, Port of New Orleans, American Waterways Operators, Gulf Intracoastal Canal Association, American Association of Drilling Engineers, Louisiana Oil and Gas Association, and Waterways Council.