AWO elects first female board chair

Members of the American Waterways Operators (AWO) have selected Kelly Teichman as their first board chairwoman.

Teichman, executive chairwoman of T&T Marine of Galveston, Texas, is the first woman to serve as board chair for the towing industry trade group. She now leads the AWO board comprised of dozens of towing industry leaders from across the United States.

Teichman, who previously served as the AWO’s Southern Region chair, has spent more than 20 years with T&T Marine Salvage. She succeeds outgoing chairman Rick Iuliucci, a vice president with Baltimore-based Vane Brothers Co.

In her first remarks as board chairwoman, Teichman stressed the importance of building a strong foundation. “It is an approach that all of us together have collectively applied to our priorities as an industry, and it has effectively positioned us to navigate today’s challenges and create tomorrow’s opportunities,” she said according to remarks released by the AWO.

Teichman was elected during the AWO’s Spring Convention and Annual Membership Meeting held in May in Washington, D.C. Patrick Sutton, the chief operating officer for American Commercial Barge Line, was elected vice chairman; Brian Hughes, vice president of operations and sales for Hughes Bros. Inc., was reelected treasurer.

In her remarks, Teichman also highlighted the wide range of career opportunities available in the towing industry and the rising role of women within the maritime sector.

“There is a place here for anyone who is committed to working hard, being part of a team and having a meaningful impact on our country and its supply chain,” she said. “If you have what it takes, you are not only encouraged to join this industry, but to rise through the ranks and thrive within it no matter where you come from, no matter your background.

“In that regard,” she continued, “I’m especially excited for the continuing prominence of women in this industry, whether on the boats or shoreside, and I look forward to contributing positively to their experience however I can.”