Joe Rella has been promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Austal. Rella will be replacing Bob Browning as President of Austal’s US operations in . As of August 22, Browning will assume the role of managing director and CEO of Austal Limited. Rella was introduced as Austal ’s COO almost a year ago. Since joining Austal, Rella has coordinated several major efforts, including the successful rollout and launch of the Littoral Combat Ship, (LCS 2), which is scheduled to be Christened on October 4. He played a role in the success of the planning, design and start of construction for Austal ’s 700,000-square-foot Modular Manufacturing Facility for which a groundbreaking ceremony was held in the end of July. He has also been coordinating the construction of the second Hawaii Superferry which is scheduled to launch in the end of September ahead of the contracted launch date. Since his introduction to Austal , Rella has overseen the growth and maintenance of a highly skilled shipyard staff of over 1,000 employees and incorporated production process improvements. He has played an integral role in the institution of several major improvements to the employee benefits package which has resulted in increasing Austal’s ability to attract the top shipbuilders of the industry to our yard as an employer of choice.