$77K Raised for Maritime Training

Monday, November 03, 2008

$77K Raised for Maritime Training

Members of the commercial community of the Port of Houston, America’s second largest Port in terms of total tonnage, met last week in support of the Seamen’s Church Institute (SCI).

At the Fourth Annual Maritime Training Benefit Luncheon, the area’s leading maritime transportation companies assembled for a fundraiser at the Institute’s training center in Houston. The October 22nd event raised over $77,000 for SCI’s Center for Maritime Education, which provides training for thousands of professional inland captains and pilots.

An area hit in September by destructive Hurricane Ike, many operations in the Port sustained damage from the powerful storm, including SCI’s Center located within the 25-mile-long complex. “We were concerned with the safety and needs of the Port’s community and their families,” said the Rev. David M. Rider, Executive Director of SCI. “We wondered if continuing with the scheduled luncheon was the right thing to do.”

Rider continued, “This luncheon, in spite of recent events, including the global economic crisis, raised even more money than the previous year. These companies have a strong commitment to their employees and the high quality training they receive at SCI’s facilities.” The speaker at this year’s event, Ed Emmett, County Judge of Harris County, also praised the Port community and talked of a future with continued growth and valuable assets.

Dennis Steger of Channel Shipyard underwrote the cost of this year’s luncheon. Chairs of the event were Joseph H. Pyne and C. Berdon Lawrence of Kirby Corporation.

About the Seamen’s Church Institute and Maritime Education

The Seamen’s Church Institute of New York & New Jersey (SCI) was founded in 1834 and is affiliated with the Episcopal Church. Annually, its chaplains visit 3,400 vessels in the Port of New York and New Jersey and along 2,200 miles of America’s inland waterways. SCI’s maritime education facilities provide navigational training to nearly 1,600 mariners each year through simulator-based facilities located in Houston, TX and Paducah, KY. The Institute and its maritime attorneys are advocates for merchant mariners by the United States Government, including the Congress, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, as well as the United Nations, the International Maritime Organization, the International Labor organization and maritime trade associations.

SCI opened its maritime training center in Houston, Texas in 2001.

(www.seamenschurch.org)

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