About the blog
Many of us who have worked and lived by the sea have been inspired by John Masefield’s classic poem, Sea-Fever.
Masefield’s own life story is equally inspiring; a young boy with a challenging childhood takes to the sea and experiences life in a way that opens up new worlds of opportunity. While probably most famously known for Sea-Fever, his time as poet laureate of England was second only to that of Tennyson.
I have recently been able to bring together my experience in business and nonprofit management with my interest in leadership and America’s rich maritime heritage in founding Sea-Fever Consulting LLC.
The Sea-Fever blog is a work in progress that will cover subjects that interest me, professionally and personally. Topics will include maritime heritage and cultural initiatives, corporate social responsibility, Leaders and leadership, nonprofit management and communications, new media, web 2.0, sailing and whatever else I feel might be worth sharing.
If you enjoy the Sea-Fever blog, please check out my latest project, Weekly Leader, an online magazine about leadership.
About the blogger
My maritime career, and fascination with the topic of leadership, started in 1973 at the age of 13 when I enrolled as a freshman at Tabor Academy in Marion, MA. For my four years of high school, I participated in the Tabor’s sail training program which was clearly a life forming experience. My senior year, I had the great fortune to be elected executive officer of 128’ square topsail schooner Tabor Boy providing my first true leadership experience. In 1976, I raced in the Bicentennial Tall Ships Race from Bermuda to Newport and participated in Operation Sail events. Before graduating from Tabor in 1977, I sailed to and from Bermuda on three other occasions and extensively up and down the Atlantic Coast accumulating nearly 1,000 days at sea before the age of 18. (For more about the sailing school vessel Tabor Boy, please visit The Tabor Boy Project.)
My maritime career continued during my college years when I served as captain of the Cuttyhunk Ferry M/V Alert during the summer and restored antique boats at Classic Boat Works, Mystic, CT during the school year.
After graduating from Connecticut College in 1981 with a B.A. in Economics, I embarked on a twenty-year career in marine insurance and reinsurance working in New York, Boston, San Francisco and St. Louis. In 1986, I attained the professional designation of Chartered Property & Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) and was the first recipient of the American Institute of Marine Underwriters’ Harold Jackson Scholarship which allowed me to study and work at Lloyds of London. In 1996, I was appointed president, chief operating officer and partner of Mariner Management Group, Inc., an international risk management and insurance services organization with offices in New Jersey and California.
In January 2001 my nonprofit career began when I joined the American Sail Training Association as executive director and board member. In that year, we successfully launched the TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE®, an annual series of Tall Ships races, cruises in company, rallies and maritime festivals that rotate around the coasts of North America. On my watch, the CHALLEGE visited 36 North American cities drawing 8 million spectators down to the waterfront and generating over $450 million of economic impact for host communities.
During that period, ASTA also experienced a significant increase in capacity to serve the diverse and expanding sail training community. Fund Development and Education departments were created and staffed and revenue streams were broadened and diversified. I represented the American Sail Training Association and the United States on the International Council of Sail Training International, a charity located in the United Kingdom whose purpose is to promote sail training globally.
In 2005, I was one of 18 nonprofit leaders to be named Rhode Island Foundation Fellow. I designed a professional and personal development program centered around the study of leadership. As part of my Fellowship I participated in several executive leadership programs including The Leadership Journey at The Wharton School, The Executive Seminar at The Aspen Institute and The Art and Practice of Leadership Development: A Master Class for Professional Trainers, Educators and Consultants at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Goverment
I have had the honor of serving on the Headmaster Council of Tabor Academy and am an Overseer of Sea Education Association (SEA), an incredible college accredited semester long sail training / science program out of Woods Hole, MA.
With Sea-Fever Consulting LLC I am able to bring together my extensive business, nonprofit, maritime and leadership experiences to assist nonprofit organizations navigate challenges, discover opportunities and find a star to steer by.
From January through June 2008, I worked with Northeast Maritime Institute creating an exciting new international maritime education and employment initiative for at-risk, under served youth in Bermuda. (more here)
In October of 2008, I launched Weekly Leader, an online magazine about leadership.
In 2011, I joined WaterFire Providence, an amazing arts organization in Providence, RI, where I am managing director and coCEO with Barnaby Evans, creator, founder and executive artistic director. WaterFire is an art installation/event that takes place on the rivers and parks that run through downtown Providence. Each year about 1,000,000 visitors experience WaterFire with up to 100,000 on a single evening. WaterFire activity annually creates $114,000,000 in economic output, generates over $9,000,000 in direct tax revenue for the State of Rhode Island and support approximately 1,300 for local residents. In May 2017, WaterFire will open the WaterFire Arts Center as it’s first permanent home as well as a community arts center like no other in the region. For more information, please visit http://future.waterfire.org.
Finally and most importantly, my amazing wife, Jenny, and I live with our 2 beautiful children, Luke and Joy, in the quintessential New England seaside village of Mattapoisett, MA.
Thank you for visiting. Hope you find something fun or useful and please join in the conversation because it makes it all so much more interesting!