(NEW YORK, NY; November 11, 2002)–Norman Mineta, U.S. Secretary of Transportation, presented one of two United Seamen’s Service 2002 Admiral of the Ocean Sea (AOTOS) Awards to Tom Crowley Jr., Chairman, President and CEO of Crowley Maritime, Friday night before some 900 people at the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers.
An AOTOS award was also presented to Capt. Timothy A. Brown, President of the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO.
The AOTOS award, the maritime industry’s most prestigious recognition, honors those within the shipping industry who have made significant contributions to American shipping and American Seafarers. The men were chosen from among a group, which was solicited by USS from more than 160 maritime management, labor, and government officials.
“I’ve always thought of this award as honoring a lifetime of achievement in the maritime industry,” said Crowley in his acceptance speech. “ I think about the people who have received this honor before – certainly my father in 1988, Malcom McLean in 1984 and many others. These are people who devoted much of their lives to this industry, were pioneers and accomplished some very amazing things. Toward the end of their long and distinguished careers, this very fine organization would put them in a tuxedo and recognize them for what they’ve done.”
“I hope you’re not trying to tell me something by giving me this award now” Crowley quipped. “Please don’t count me out quite yet. I’ve got a ways to go. Our company is on the verge of some very exciting things.”
Crowley praised company employees throughout his acceptance speech.
“What our company has accomplished over the years would not have been possible without our thousands of dedicated Crowley employees around the world,” he said. “Their commitment to excellence, record of accomplishment and loyalty to the company, allow me to stand before you tonight to accept this award.”
Crowley also thanked the many unions, with which the company works, for their support and cooperation through the years.
“By working together, we have been able to pursue mutually beneficial business opportunities that otherwise would not have been possible,” he said “And by mutually beneficial, I mean we created jobs for our employees and made profits to reinvest in the business. For that, I salute all of you.”
Crowley also evoked the memory of his late father, Thomas B. Crowley, Sr., who won the AOTOS award in 1988.
“If my father were here today, he would be hitting us all with a baseball bat saying what the hell is happening to the Jones Act. There is no question now that the last chance for the survival for the US merchant marine is right here in our own backyard,” Crowley said. “We must all work together to ensure that the Jones Act is preserved. I truly believe, and I was trained by one of the best, that this is the last chance for the US Merchant Marine.”
All proceeds from the AOTOS awards banquet benefit USS community services abroad for the U.S. merchant marine.
The USS promotes the welfare of American seafarers and their dependents, seafarers of all nations, U.S. government, military and civilian personnel and others engaged in the maritime industry. Through a network of worldwide USS Centers, the men and women of the Merchant Marine and U.S. Armed Forces are provided with health, recreation and welfare services. Every USS Center provides seafarers with services such as shipboard visits, hospitals visits, wholesome meals, organized recreational activities, information facilities, currency exchange, mailing services, international telephone operations, legal counseling, community liaison and library facilities.
Oakland-based Crowley Maritime Corporation, founded in 1892, is primarily a family- and employee-owned company engaged in worldwide logistics, liner services, contract towing and transportation, energy support services, ship assist and escort services, vessel management and petroleum and chemical marine transport. Additional information about Crowley its subsidiaries and business units may be found on the Internet at www.crowley.com.