Port of Duluth-Superior to commemorate a belated National Maritime Day with USDOT Maritime Administrator as keynote speaker on May 27

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Duluth, Minn., USA – U.S. Merchant Marine veterans, current seafarers and maritime industry stakeholders will gather tomorrow (Wed.), May 27, 2015, to commemorate National Maritime Day in the Port of Duluth-Superior. The event is set for 12:15 p.m. in the Horizon Room at the DECC Harbor Side Convention Center in Duluth.

USDOT Maritime Administrator Paul “Chip” Jaenichen (pronounced: Jan’-ĭ -ken) will deliver the luncheon’s keynote address: “A Look Towards the Future – Restoring a Vibrant U.S. Maritime Industry.” The annual event honors the historic and ongoing service and sacrifice of our nation’s Merchant Marine and celebrates the contributions of the U.S. maritime industry.

The commemorative event, which commences with a memorial service to honor those seafarers, is hosted locally by the Propeller Club of Duluth-Superior and is being held a few days later than usual – May 27 rather than the 22nd – to coordinate travel itineraries of several key participants in town for a morning Port Authority waterfront groundbreaking ceremony.

Paul “Chip” Jaenichen was appointed by President Obama and sworn in as the 15th Maritime
Administrator on July 25, 2014. He previously served as both Deputy and Acting Maritime
Administrator from July 2012 - July 2014. Captain Jaenichen was a nuclear trained Submarine
Officer in the U.S. Navy for 30 years. He served as Commanding Officer of USS ALBANY
(SSN 753) and as Commander, Submarine Squadron ELEVEN in San Diego, California.
shore tours included assignments as Deputy Chief of Legislative Affairs for the Department of
the Navy and as Chief, European and North Atlantic Treaty Organization Policy Division on
the Joint Staff where he was responsible for military-to-military engagement with all 26 NATO
nations. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Ocean Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy
and a Masters in Engineering Management from Old Dominion University.

National Maritime Day is a time-honored tradition that recognizes America’s Merchant Marine for their legacy of service and sacrifice, safeguarding our nation and its trade corridors during times of war and peace. It traces its history to 1933 when President Franklin Roosevelt, with Congressional support, set aside May 22 as National Maritime Day. The date was chosen to coincide with the sailing of the first steamship, the SS Savannah, in 1819 from its homeport in Savannah, Georgia to Liverpool, England, signaling the start of an era of American technological leadership. In the later 20th century, the day overwhelmingly became a celebration of the Merchant Marines. According to MARAD, “the United States Armed Forces could not fight a war overseas without the merchant marine and commercial ships to carry the tanks and torpedoes, the bullets and the beans.” Today, National Maritime Day is observed across the country as a combined salute to merchant mariners, veterans and the entire maritime industry, focusing attention on the importance of maritime and its value to America’s economy, national security, balance of trade and quality of life.                                              

For more information, contact: 
Adele Yorde, PR Manager, (218) 727-8525 or (218) 390-6973 (cell)



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