(Throggs Neck, NY) Christopher J. Wiernicki, Chairman, President and CEO of ABS, addressed the college graduates, their families, faculty members and honored guests at the State University of New York (SUNY) Maritime College’s commencement ceremony on 6 May. The ceremony saw approximately 300 students graduate inside historic Fort Schuyler.
“I am honored to congratulate you on behalf of the men and women of ABS,” said Wiernicki. “SUNY Maritime College and ABS have shared a special relationship for many years. Alumni from the university play an important role not only in the success of ABS as an organization, but in furthering our larger mission of protecting life, property and the environment.”
Wiernicki’s remarks focused on the importance of serving as a leader no matter the situation one faces in life, highlighting the value of building relationships, looking to the future, and placing respect and dignity as the cornerstone of any leadership philosophy.
ABS’ focus to help develop the next generation of leaders in the maritime industry has been the driving force behind a longstanding relationship with SUNY Maritime College. ABS currently supports two endowed faculty positions at the school, which represent the largest single gift in the college’s more than 140-year history. ABS also supports dozens of student scholarships and original research projects every year.
“Over the years, ABS has been a valued friend to the college in its support of our students and faculty,” said Rear Adm. Michael Alfultis, President of SUNY Maritime College. “It’s an honor to have Chris Wiernicki at our spring commencement as a way of acknowledging all ABS has done, and continues to do, to help maritime education.”
During the ceremony Wiernicki received an honorary Doctor of Science from SUNY Maritime College in recognition of his professional achievements and leadership in the marine industry. In addition to serving as Chairman, President and CEO of ABS and Chairman of the ABS Group of Companies, Inc., Wiernicki also serves as Chairman of the International Association of Classification Societies. He previously held several senior roles at ABS, including President and Chief Operating Officer (COO), Chief Technology Officer, and President and COO of ABS Europe Ltd.
Wiernicki holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Vanderbilt, a Master of Science in Structural Engineering from George Washington University, where he was later elected to the George Washington University Engineering Hall of Fame, a Master of Science in Ocean Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and an honorary Doctor of Science from Maine Maritime Academy. Wiernicki is a Fellow with the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers. He was awarded the Vice Admiral Emory S. Land Medal in 2013 for outstanding accomplishment in the marine field and is a member of the International Maritime Hall of Fame Class of 2016. Wiernicki lectures at the university level on topics ranging from leadership to technology, serves on the Board of Trustees for the Seamen’s Church Institute as well as numerous University Boards and Advisory Councils.
Founded in 1862, ABS is a leading international classification organization devoted to promoting the security of life and property and preserving the natural environment through the development and verification of standards for the design, construction and operational maintenance of marine and offshore assets.