MISSION to Seafarers Sydney has appointed Commodore Christopher “Kit” Rynd to the board.

Commodore Rynd, who has a background in maritime operations, leadership and seafaring, is volunteering in his position on the board.

MtS Sydney chair Robert Dunn said Commodore Rynd has expertise in the key issues the industry is facing, as well as hands-on maritime experience from around the world.

“An added bonus for our board is that he has an insightful, sharp mind which helps him to see the bigger picture as well as a kind heart that genuinely wants the best results for seafarers and makes him a pleasure to work with,” Mr Dunn said.

“We are all looking forward to having him working with us. His contribution will be invaluable as we work to steer the Mission into facing the challenges of the future.”

Commodore Rynd said he accepted the board’s invitation to serve because during his time at sea he had seen how seafarers had benefitted from the Mission’s work.

“Seafarer wellbeing is integral with seafarer safety and performance,” Commodore Rynd said.

“Supporting seafarers’ mental, physical and spiritual wellbeing is what the Mission is about and to which I wish to contribute my time, training and experience.”

He said he understands the busy and often stressful life of seafarers and multinational crews as well as the demands of the work in all positions on board.

“The Mission to Seafarers provides a haven and people who are there for the benefit of seafarers. This is particularly helpful when they need someone outside workmates or employer to talk to, or a break from life aboard to reconnect with their other life.

“With shorter turnaround times and restrictions for health and security reasons this is more important than ever.”

Commodore Rynd was born in New Zealand and grew up in Sri Lanka, Singapore, Fiji and Samoa. He spent more than 45 years at sea, mostly on passenger and cruise ships, as well as eight years as a List 1 Reserve Officer in the Royal Navy with service in mine hunters and fisheries protection.

Commodore Rynd has undertaken various deployments as instructor, coach and marine auditor. He has also served as an expert witness in maritime affairs for the High Court of New South Wales and has carried out on-board audits of corporate vessels for health, environment safety and security compliance.

He is currently working as a consultant in maritime affairs with a special interest in human factors training and Bridge Resource Management implementation.