Peter Levesque

Peter Levesque Named President of CMA CGM America, APL

In late November, the CMA CGM Group, a global sea, land, air and logistics solutions company led by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rodolphe Saadé, announced that Ed Aldridge, president of CMA CGM America and American President Lines (APL), would retire on Dec. 6.

Peter Levesque, an international global supply chain executive with more than 30 years of industry leadership experience, assumed the presidency of both CMA CGM America and APL upon his departure.

Levesque is an accomplished international shipping executive who until 2021 was president of Ports America Group. Prior to Ports America, he spent 25 years based in Hong Kong and held leadership positions in international transportation, logistics and supply chain companies including CEO of Modern Terminals Limited, CEVA Logistics and DHL.

“This is an exciting time for the CMA CGM Group here in North America, and I look forward to continuing the momentum generated by Ed Aldridge and his team over the last 14 years,” Levesque said.

“We will continue to work closely with our associates, vendors and customers to achieve CMA CGM’s goal of becoming the industry’s number-one carrier and employer of choice,” he added.

“CMA CGM Group is grateful for Ed Aldridge’s leadership, dedication and the results he has achieved during the last 14 years, as the company has added differentiated ocean services, expanded its logistics capability in North America and significantly grown ocean volumes and market shares,” the company said in a statement.

The CMA CGM Group is one of the United States’ top export carriers as well as a leader on the transpacific trade.

“I truly appreciate the opportunities I have had with the CMA CGM Group and the outstanding results we have all achieved together,” Aldridge said. “The future is bright for the Group in the United States, and I am honored to have been part of the company’s progression.”  

Mark Widner

John S. Connor Inc. Hires Mark Widner as Freight Forwarding and Logistics VP

In mid-November, John S. Connor Inc. a customs brokerage, supply chain transportation, and logistics services for global importers and shippers, announced that Mark Widner has joined the company as Vice President-Freight Forwarding & Logistics.

Widner has been tasked with leading the growth of the International Air/Ocean and Warehouse products, as well as the company’s International Partner Network and Carrier Relations programs.

Prior to joining Connor Inc., Widner was managing director for freight forwarding with Lotte Global Logistics.

He received his Master of Science degree in International Management from Boston University Brussels and a B.A. in Economics and International Relations from the University of California, Davis. He is a licensed US Customs broker and earned certificates from the International Trade in Arms Regulations, Export Administration Regulations and Dangerous Goods by Air and Ocean.

“The addition of Mark to our company is in line with our strategic goals of expanding our International Air/Ocean Freight Forwarding services,” Connor Inc. President Lee Connor said. “Mark’s extensive experience in growing a global supply chain organization and strengthening operations resources will contribute to the depth of our capabilities in this area.”  

Richard Lidinsky

Former FMC Chair Richard Lidinsky Dies at Age 76

Former Federal Maritime Commission member and chair Richard A. Lidinsky, Jr., of Baltimore died Nov. 17 of Parkinson’s disease, the Baltimore Sun reported Nov. 22. He was 76.

Lidinsky, who was born and raised in Baltimore, was sworn in as a maritime commissioner in July 2009 after being nominated by President Barack Obama on June 18, 2009, and confirmed by the Senate on July 24, 2009. On Sept. 11, 2009 he was designated Chairman and served in that capacity until April 1, 2013.

Lidinsky arrived at the Commission as a 37-year veteran in the maritime trade industry. After serving as a Congressional aide on the U.S. House of Representatives Merchant Marine and Fisheries Committee, he began his professional legal career in the FMC’s Office of General Counsel as Legislative Counsel from 1973-75.

In 1975, the Maryland Port Administration appointed him to be Director of Tariffs and National Port Affairs, as well as counsel.

While representing the Port of Baltimore on both regional and national port organizations, he was a key architect of the port protection sections in the Panama Canal Treaty Implementing Legislation and the Shipping Act of 1984. He also helped negotiate on behalf of the port one of the first US-China trade agreements.

In 1985, Sea Containers Ltd., the global maritime manufacturer and container leasing company, recruited Lidinsky to establish its Washington, DC office. As Vice President for Governmental Affairs with the company until 2006, he secured contracts with the Pentagon to supply military equipment from Sea Containers’ factory in Charleston, SC.

He also served as a member of the Sealift Transportation Committee of the National Defense Transportation Association; as Board Director and on the Defense, Transportation and Port Security Committee of the British-American Business Association; and as a high-level expert to the U.S. NATO Delegation on the Ports and Intermodal Transportation Committee from 1995-2005.

He also worked as an attorney and international trade consultant in private practice.  

Stuart McVitty

Bryton Marine Group Appoints McVitty CEO

Vernon, B.C.-based Bryton Marine Group in November named Stuart McVitty as its chief operating officer.

McVitty, who is relocating from South Africa, has extensive experience of operational leadership, project management and business development. An alumnus of Harvard Business School, McVitty’s decades of marine industry experience includes serving as a board member of the South African Boat Builder Expert Council.

Until recently, he was CEO of a South African company building highly specialized commercial vessels.

In his new role with Bryton Marine, McVitty is responsible for developing performance goals and long-term operational plans as well as maximizing efficiency through extensive process analysis and intercompany collaboration.

He will work with the CEO Byron Bolton and the senior management team to implement the strategic vision and values of the company, Bryton Marine said in a statement.

“On behalf of the team, I am thrilled to welcome Stuart to Bryton Marine Group,” Bolton said. “He is a proven leader, and his experience positions us to move to the next phase of growth.”

In a statement, McVitty called joining Bryton Marine Group “a privilege.”

“The team are seasoned professionals and I look forward to collaborating with the diversified companies within the Bryton Marine Group to leverage our purpose and push the boundaries of innovation to deliver exceptional value, not only for our customers but for our employees, suppliers, stakeholders, community, and the environment,” he said.

Family-owned Bryton Marine has five maritime companies in the group — All American Marine in Bellingham, Wash.; Port Angeles, Wash.-based BRIX Marine; EagleCraft of Campbell River, B.C.; KingFisher Boats, based in Vernon, B.C.; and Clarkston, Wash.-based Renaissance Marine Group.   

Thomas A. Cropper

Cal Maritime President Cropper Announces Retirement

On Nov. 28, Cal Maritime President Thomas A. Cropper announced that he would retire from his role on Aug. 1, 2023.

An interim president is expected to be appointed to lead the university, and the California State University system will launch a national search to identify Cropper’s successor. Under university policy, the chair of the CSU Board of Trustees, Wenda Fong, and Interim Chancellor Jolene Koester will select a committee comprised of campus and community stakeholders who’ll be announced at a later date.

Thereafter, campus and community input will be sought in an open forum held on the Cal Maritime campus.

“Throughout his tenure leading the California State University Maritime Academy, President Thomas A. Cropper has done exceptional work to integrate our most unique institution into the California State University system and the Vallejo community, while enhancing the academic excellence of the university,” California State University Interim Chancellor Jolene Koester said in a statement.

“In his decade-long service, President Cropper has consistently demonstrated a commitment to student success and to improving the student experience,” Koester continued. “He spearheaded facilities improvements across campus and helped to secure funding for a new training ship. Under his leadership, the university has undertaken a series of meaningful actions to advance diversity, equity and inclusion and to serve as a national model for maritime academies.”   

Chris Hughey Named General Counsel for Maritime Commission

Phillip C. “Chris” Hughey has been hired as the General Counsel of the Federal Maritime Commission and appointed to be a member of the Senior Executive Service, the FMC announced Nov. 7.

In his new capacity as General Counsel to the FMC, Hughey will provide legal advice and recommendations to the chairman and commissioners on regulatory and policy matters. He’ll also serve as a member of the agency’s senior management team and will also be responsible for supervising the work of attorneys assigned to the Office of the General Counsel.

Hughey began his career in public service in 1997 as an attorney in the Office of the General Counsel at the FMC, and later served as the Commission’s Deputy General Counsel. In 2007, he joined the Federal Election Commission as its deputy general counsel and was designated as the FEC’s Acting General Counsel from August 2010 to September 2011.

Hughey assumed his new role at the Maritime Commission following a 10-year career in the U.S. Department of State as a Foreign Service Officer, where his postings included Brazil, Kuwait, and Madagascar.

“We are fortunate to have Chris Hughey join the Commission as the General Counsel. His prior FMC experience and litigation background is valuable, FMC Daniel Maffei said. “He is uniquely qualified to assume these duties and my colleagues, and I will benefit from his legal counsel.”

Hughey possesses extensive experience as a litigator, having argued cases before the Supreme Court of the United States, the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the District of Columbia and Fourth Circuits, and the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

He earned J.D. and LL.M. degrees from Cornell University in 1996, an MPA from Harvard University in 2007, and a B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington in 1993. He is admitted to the bars of the State of New York, the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.   

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