Tell us a little about your current role.
I relocated from the Teekay Singapore office back to Teekay in Sydney around two years ago to take up my current role as director, marine services. I was attracted to this role due to the changing nature of the Teekay business in Australia from predominately coastal trading vessels to international trades with a focus on growing within the offshore and government marine services sectors.
A key part of my role is to ensure that we maintain and improve upon the quality outcomes that are synonymous with the Teekay brand and which our customers expect, while the organisation also implements changes that will ensure a sustainable future for our changing business.
I also enjoy the risk management focus of my role and the engagement this requires with all parts of the Teekay Australia lines of business and operations.
What are some career highlights?
Commencing my seagoing life as a deck cadet with BHP, it was always a dream to sail as Master, and I was fortunate to achieve that goal early in my career sailing in that position on a Teekay-managed ro-ro.
After completing my business degree in maritime transport and logistics and moving my focus to shore roles, there are a number of highlights that come to mind. I had the opportunity to work as DPA in the Teekay Vancouver office for two years and then spent three years heading up Teekay’s Global HSEQ team in Singapore from 2012-2015.
A highlight was setting up the HSEQ team in Singapore from scratch after some significant organisational changes. I was then able to work with my new team and the fleet groups globally to set Teekay’s safety and environmental strategies and deliver some significant projects and improvements under these strategies.
Outcomes I’m most proud of include embedding human element and leadership training and focus in the form of “E-colors” across all Teekay operational offices and vessels, and implementing best practice navigation procedures (based on airline industry procedure writing standards) across all company vessels. The strategies put in place and projects that were delivered under them have helped to significantly improve vessel performance.
Since my return to Australia, I’ve had the opportunity to chair the operational seaworthiness assessment panel for the first air warfare destroyer being built in Adelaide, and to address industry participants with a presentation on stakeholder engagement during an emergency at last year’s AMSA salvage and wreck workshop. For each one of these highlights what stands out to me is the wonderful people in the industry that I’ve been fortunate to meet and work with.
What is the thing you like best about your role – what gets you out of bed in the morning?
The opportunity to draw upon my experience and skill sets and make a positive difference for the people I work with and our customers. One thing I learnt very early on in moving from a ship to a shore role, is that no two days are ever the same. Vessel operations are very dynamic and life is never dull when working for a marine company. There are days where I wish things were not quite so ‘dynamic’, however in the end it is these challenges and desire to drive ongoing improvements that gets me out of bed!
What first attracted you to a maritime job?
I took on the role of deck cadet straight after completing year 12 at high school, sailing on my first vessel a month after my 17th birthday. I had always been interested in the sea, growing up on the beach just south of Adelaide and with yachts and boats a regular part of my childhood. However, I had never really considered the marine industry as a career option. Unlike many in the industry, I had no family connections and really a big lack of understanding about what going to sea was all about. It was just luck that I saw an advertisement in the paper for a cadetship program, had a desire for something a bit different than going straight to university and an affinity with the sea. After going on my first vessel I never looked back.
What was your first-ever job?
Growing up, I used to mow the lawns of some elderly neighbours. I once worked in a local café for an afternoon, but after being put on sweeping and cleaning duties in the bathroom decided very quickly that was not for me!
What would be your ideal holiday?
I enjoy beach holidays with my family. In particular, we really enjoyed Hawaii so I would be very happy to find a nice resort in Maui and relax with my wife and three children for a week or two there! For a colder experience my older children learnt to ski when we lived in Vancouver and we have skied before in Australia. A ski holiday in New Zealand is an experience that is high on our list.
Do you have any hobbies?
I’m a big sports fan and since moving back to Sydney have tried to take every opportunity to enjoy live sport (high quality sporting events are few and far between in Singapore) – in particular the cricket and AFL. I was fortunate enough to tick off an item on my bucket list last year attending the AFL grand final at the MCG – a very memorable experience!
What’s your favourite film? Why?
I always seem to go back to ‘The Rock’ with Sean Connery and Nicolas Cage. While the acting is not the best, I’m a fan of San Francisco and the backdrop to this film with Alcatraz and car chases on the hilly streets makes it a very easy film to watch.
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From the print edition April 27, 2017