Craig Tornga, general manager of oil industry services for Crowley Marine Services
in Alaska, was awarded the 2001 Thomas Crowley Trophy, Crowley Maritime Corporation's highest honor, at ceremonies held last week in Seattle. Tornga, based in Anchorage, is a member of Crowley's Energy and Marine Services group, which is part of the corporation's Contract Services segment.
Created more than a decade ago, the Thomas Crowley Trophy award honors employees with outstanding performance, whose dedication, leadership, initiative and productivity most clearly reflect those of the company's founder. The trophy, a limited edition, bronze sculpture depicting young Thomas Crowley as he ferried goods to and from ships on San Francisco Bay in the early 1890s, is a tribute to the founder of the company as well as the winners of the award.
Tom Crowley, Jr., Chairman, President and CEO of Crowley Maritime Corporation, presented the award at the ceremony, which was attended by about 50 Crowley employees. Included in the group were previous Thomas Crowley Trophy recipients: Sandy Teng, Director, Technology; Bruce Harland, Director, Operations; Lee Egland, Manager, Labor Relations; John Ara, Manager, Contract Services; Charlie Nalen, Vice President Environmental Safety and Quality Assurance, and Alex Sweeney, Vice President & General Manager, Valdez Services.
"Craig is a person with a can-do attitude who is always looking for new business opportunities, even those that are outside his normal scope of responsibility," said Crowley. Tornga is widely credited with helping to secure the Orlan tow contract, a project utilizing two Crowley business units, and selling not only Crowley's skills in ocean towing, but its Health, Safety & Environmental programs as well. The tow, completed last year, involved moving a huge concrete island drilling structure from the North Slope of Alaska to Russia. In addition, Tornga encouraged the establishment of Crowley Alaska, which he now heads up. As an Alaska-based company Crowley is in more favorable position for securing certain work. He helped re-establish sealifts to the North Slope and Northstar Island after five years without them, and he helped realign business unit support services during major changes in Crowley's business.
Tornga has also enhanced Crowley's standing in the close-knit Alaskan community through his involvement on the Board of Directors for Junior Achievement of Alaska. He is also active in the Anchorage YMCA and the Boys and Girls Club.
"To receive the Thomas Crowley Trophy is the highest aspiration of any Crowley employee, and I am deeply honored to be recognized with such a prestigious award," Tornga said. "It is impossible to achieve an award like this individually, rather it is more a reflection of the excellent work done by our entire team in Alaska and throughout the Crowley organization." Tornga began his career with Crowley in July of 1977 as an Ordinary Seaman in Seattle, Wash. Over the years he has held supervisory and managerial roles for the company in marine dispatch and customer service. In 1994 he was promoted to Director of Contract Services, and in 1996 he was appointed general manager, oil industry services and he relocated to Anchorage, Alaska with
his family. His current responsibilities include managing and directing sales and marketing for the company's oil Industry services in the Beaufort Sea and Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. He also manages Crowley's all terrain operations (CATCO) in Dead Horse, Alaska. This company provides transportation of personnel and equipment to remote sites in the arctic using specialized vehicles with huge bag tires that protect the environment. Tornga attended Northwest Nazarene College in Idaho where he studied Business Administration.