(Houston) ABS Chairman, President and CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki has been inducted to the Vanderbilt University School of Engineering Academy of Distinguished Alumni and also named to the Vanderbilt University School of Engineering’s Board of Visitors. Prior to receiving the Distinguished Alumni Award, Wiernicki served as the keynote speaker to discuss the absolute value of talent through the emerging needs in tomorrow’s workplaces while addressing fellow alumni and friends of the university at a Commodore Classroom event held Tuesday, 28 March, in Houston.
“Chris is a leader with tremendous influence and impact,” said Dean Philippe Fauchet. “He has built an outstanding career, led his company with integrity, and upheld the tenets of the engineering profession, which he has guided and helped shape. His dedication to the profession has inspired many, and the School of Engineering is proud to recognize him as a distinguished alumnus.”
“I am humbled and honored to receive this recognition,” said Wiernicki. “As the son of immigrants, I was instilled with values based on the importance of dignity and respect, education, hard work, perseverance and a pioneering spirit. My well-rounded Vanderbilt education has been pivotal throughout my journey as a business leader.”
During his keynote address, Wiernicki examined the transformation of a talent equation.
“As new technology redefines our talent needs to require new technical skill sets, the rate of change of technology redefines our talent characterization to require new learning mindsets,” said Wiernicki. “The Fourth Industrial Revolution is reshaping our world through unprecedented processing power and unlimited access to knowledge. Tomorrow’s talent must continuously adapt and learn to process enormous amounts of data.”
Wiernicki holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree in Civil Engineering from Vanderbilt University, a Master of Science degree 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 degree in Ocean Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and honorary Doctor of Science degrees from Maine Maritime Academy and SUNY Maritime College. 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 was inducted into the International Maritime Hall of Fame in 2016.
Wiernicki lectures at the university level on topics ranging from leadership to technology and serves on the Board of Trustees for the Seamen’s Church Institute as well as numerous University Boards and Advisory Councils.
About the Vanderbilt University School of Engineering Distinguished Alumni Award and Board of Visitors
The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes notable achievement, significant service and excellent character. Honorees are chosen by an awards committee that comprises the dean, faculty members and alumni representatives.
The Vanderbilt University School of Engineering's Board of Visitors is comprised of some of the school's most distinguished alumni and friends. The board was established in March 2013 and it is the successor organization to the school's Committee of Visitors and the Engineering Alumni Council. Board members serve as advisers to the Dean and senior staff and meet twice annually.
Their role is to provide advice and foster the achievement of excellence in all aspects of the school, review and support strategic plans, and assist in developing beneficial relationships with industry, government, and other academic institutions.
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.