SCA announces new chairman, vice chairman

The following is text of a news release from the Shipbuilders Council of America (SCA):

(WASHINGTON) — The Shipbuilders Council of America, the national trade association representing the U.S. shipyard industry, announced new leadership and a new safety award during the association's annual spring meeting in Washington, D.C. Terry O’Brien, vice president of Austal, will take over SCA as chairman and president, and CEO Ben Bordelon of Bollinger Shipyards will serve as vice chairman.

Welcoming the new leadership at the meeting, SCA President Matthew Paxton said, “I have worked with both Terry and Ben for many years now. They have decades of experience in the maritime and shipbuilding industries, and a keen knowledge of the hard-hitting issues that we face. I am more than happy to have them in major leadership positions within the SCA, and I’m really looking forward to working with them in their new capacities as chairman and vice chairman.”

Paxton also noted in his remarks that a new safety award – Significant Safety Achievement – will be given to yards that have zero recorded fatalities for the year, and a total recordable incident rate (TRIR) of 1.0 or below. A key pillar of the shipbuilding and repair industry is safety. In fact, the safety record of the industry leads other heavy manufacturing industries by implementing highly specialized training programs, and it continues to lower rates of injury year over year. SCA is a leader and partner with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other safety organizations to continue to support and promote strong safety practices and policies.

The Significant Safety Achievement Award will be added to the other two safety awards – Excellence in Safety and Improvement in Safety – that are given annually for enhancement of operations and promotion of safety and accident prevention. This year at SCA’s Spring Meeting, 27 awards were given for exceptional safety practices.

In addition to recognizing members for exceptional safety records, SCA honored U.S. Sens. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., and Roger Wicker, R-Miss., with the organization's Maritime Leadership Award, which is given to exemplary leaders from Congress who have demonstrated outstanding dedication and support of the U.S. shipbuilding and repair industry.

Nearly 100 SCA members convened on Capitol Hill during the annual meeting to meet with congressional leaders and discuss the status of the U.S. shipbuilding and repair industry and to bring awareness regarding the industry’s critical role in America’s national and economic security. Other maritime champions, congressional and administration officials, spoke to SCA’s membership including:

● Rep. John Garamendi, D-Calif.
● Rep. Rob Wittman, R-Va.
● Secretary of the Navy Richard Spencer
● Eric Labs, senior analyst for naval forces and weapons, CBO
● Ronald O’Rourke, specialist in naval affairs, CRS
● Rep. John Rutherford, R-Fla.
● Rep. Alan Lowenthal, D-Calif.
● Adm. William Galinis, Navy program executive officer, ships
● Rep. Bradley Byrne, R-Ala.
● Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard Adm. Charles Michel
● Rep. Garret Graves, R-La.
● Coast Guard Rear Adm. Michael Haycock, assistant commandant for acquisition
● Kevin Tokarski, MarAd associate administrator for strategic sealift

By Professional Mariner Staff