(THROGGS NECK, N.Y.) — The chairman and chief executive officer of the American Bureau of Shipping will receive an honorary doctoral degree from SUNY Maritime College on May 6.
Chris Wiernicki has been CEO of the classification society since 2007 and its chairman since 2011. He will receive the degree and speak at SUNY Maritime’s spring commencement ceremony.
“Over the years, ABS has been a valued friend to the college in its support of our students and faculty,” said Rear Adm. Michael Alfultis, president of SUNY Maritime. “It’s an honor to have Chris Wiernicki at commencement this spring as a way of acknowledging all ABS has done, and continues to do, to help maritime education.”
ABS supports two endowed faculty positions, which represent the largest single gift in the college’s more than 140-year history. The corporation supports dozens of student scholarships and original research every year. Several SUNY Maritime graduates have gone on to jobs and careers within ABS as well.
Before becoming the chairman and CEO of the American Bureau of Shipping, Wiernicki held a variety of positions within the organization, including president, chief operating officer and chief technology officer of various ABS divisions at different times in his career. He has served as the chief operating officer of the ABS Group of Companies, ABS Europe and ABS Group Consulting. He as served as the chief technology officer and executive vice president of ABS Inc.
The American Bureau of Shipping is one of the largest classification societies in the world, responsible for setting and maintaining safety standards for shipping vessels and offshore structures, and for tracking compliance with those standards.
Before joining ABS, Wiernicki worked at the David Taylor Naval Research Center, now known as the Carderock Division of the Naval Surface Warfare Center, and then Designers and Planners Inc., a naval architecture firm.
Wiernicki has a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Vanderbilt University, a master’s in structural engineering from George Washington University and a master’s in ocean engineering from MIT. He is also a graduate of the Harvard School of Business advanced management program.
Approximately 300 students will graduate from SUNY Maritime this spring. Commencement begins at 11 a.m. Friday, May 6, in St. Mary’s Pentagon in Fort Schuyler.