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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

New U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Board of Visitors to Convene

Friday, January 31, 2020

WASHINGTON – U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao today announced the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy’s (USMMA) new 16 member Board of Visitors will convene for the first time at Kings Point on Monday, February 3 at 9:00 a.m. (click here for additional information).  The Board will serve through October 2021.

“The Department is dedicated to providing midshipmen with the finest possible education, preparing them to excel as mariners and military officers,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

The USMMA educates and graduates leaders of exemplary character who are committed to serving the national security, maritime transportation, and economic needs of the United States as licensed Merchant Marine Officers and commissioned officers in the Armed Forces.  Board members provide oversight on the state of morale and discipline, curriculum, instruction, physical equipment, fiscal affairs, and academic methods of the USMMA, in addition to any other matters relating to USMMA that the Board decides to consider.

“The oversight of the Board of Visitors is crucial to the Academy’s success,” said Maritime Administrator Mark H. Buzby. “The insight generated by its members allows us to provide our midshipmen and faculty with the best academic and professional environment possible.”

The Board comprises five members appointed by the President; one Senator from the Committee on Appropriations and appointed by the Vice President; two Representatives (one from the Committee on Appropriations) appointed by the Speaker of the House; two Senators appointed by the Chair of the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation; three Representatives appointed by the Chair of the Committee on Armed Services; and ex-officio members, as described by Federal law.

The new members of the USMMA Board of Visitors are:

  1. Ms. Jennifer Boykin (USMMA ’86, Presidential appointee, President of Newport News Shipbuilding and Executive Vice President of Huntington Ingalls Industries)
  2. Mr. Kevin J. Walsh, (USMMA ’05, Presidential appointee, New Jersey State Pilot at Sandy Hook Pilots Association)
  3. Mr. Stephen M. Carmel (USMMA ’79, Presidential appointee, Senior Vice President at Maersk Line, Limited)
  4. Vice Adm. Johnny R. Wolfe, Jr., USN (USMMA’88, Presidential appointee, Director of Strategic Systems Programs)
  5. Lieutenant Colonel Robert S. Volkert, USMC (USMMA ’95, Presidential appointee, Executive Officer, Flight Detachment)
  6. Senator Jerry Moran (KS, Vice Presidential appointee)
  7. Senator Roger Wicker (MS) (ex officio appointee)
  8. Representative Peter T. King (NY-03, Appointed by Speaker of the House)
  9. Representative Tom Suozzi (NY-02, Appointed by Speaker of the House)
  10. Representative Jack Bergman (MI-01, House Armed Services Committee appointee)
  11. Representative Max Rose (NY-11, House Armed Services Committee appointee)
  12. Representative Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11, House Armed Services Committee appointee)
  13. Representative Adam Smith (WA-09) (ex officio appointee)
  14. Rear Adm. Michael A. Wettlaufer, USN (ex officio appointee)
  15. Vice Adm. Daniel B. Abel, USCG (ex officio appointee)
  16. Dr. Henry S. Marcus, DBA, (ex officio appointee)




The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, located in Kings Point, N.Y., was established under the Merchant Marine Act of 1936 and was dedicated as the United States Merchant Marine Academy in 1943 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.  It is administered by the Maritime Administration under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Transportation.