Public Speaking & Training

I've given quite a few presentations to the boating public as well as industry professionals over the years. While I'm not about to argue that oratory ability is a key skill for marine surveying, the time and effort certainly isn't a waste. To begin with, I've suffered through enough lame seminars to vow that I'll never be brought up on charges of Death by Powerpoint when it's my turn at the podium. Pulling together a substantive talk requires a lot of background work and research. The exercise forces you to step back from the every day grind and put some hard thought into what we do, how we do it, and how it could be better. Hearing that your work has helped people better understand some facet of the business is just the icing on the cake.

International Boatbuilder's Exposition

Hosted by Professional Boatbuilder magazine and The National Marine Manufacturer's Association (NMMA), IBEX has become the priemiere trade show and teaching conference for the marine industry. The show is held in Miami each fall, and draws exhibitors and attendees from around the globe. While the exhibit hall is focused primarily on OEM equipment and materials suppliers for boatbuilders, the rest of the hall is dedicated to over 60 seminars ranging from design and construction to survey & repair. I've been a speaker at IBEX for close to ten years and have given presentations on the following topics:

  Systems Failure
  Failure Analysis of Metals
  Stainless Steel Selection & Failure Analysis
  Wood as an Engineering Material
  Testing Metals
  Sterndrive Failures
  Metals in Wood Construction
  Fire Investigation
  Moisture Meters
  Repair Dilemmas in Insurance Claims
  Non Destructive Testing Techniques
  Failure Analysis of Fiberglass Composites

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Woodenboat School

Located at the headquarters of Woodenboat magazine in Brooklin, ME, the Woodenboat School runs an ambitious program that covers virtually every facet of small craft construction & repair. I designed and taught a one week course on surveying wooden boats for five seasons. The first emphasis was on establishing a strong foundation of material properties, identifying different wood species, and discussing typical modes of wood failure and deterioration. The focus then shifted to studying joint and hull construction. While somewhat dry at first, this engineering approach to assessing structure was intended to leave the students with the skills to predict and root out problems on their own. The format involved a mixture of classroom and field work. The attendees ranged from boat owners, to surveyors, to USCG vessel inspectors. ^Back to top

The American Boat and Yacht Council

ABYC has branched out from their traditional role as a standards organization into offering a very comprehensive series of educational seminars. I help teach a three day seminar on Marine Accident Reconstruction. The course covers procedural issues in conducting the investigation, as well as detailed analysis of collecting and interpreting evidence. ^Back to Top

The Landing School of Boatbuilding and Design

I've been a guest lecturer at this fine institution for a number of years now. I've spoken on failure analysis as well as given presentations on the marine surveying business as a career path for graduates. If you aren't familiar with the school, click on the link and have a look. In an industry often clouded by parochial thinking and no clear avenue for advanced instruction, the Landing School is a beacon. ^Back to Top

Marine Claims Handling

A colleague and I designed and taught a three day seminar to help train the marine claims department at Travelers Insurance. The program ranged from learning how to spot red flags when sifting through paperwork to hands on discussions about typical damage claims. The emphasis was on teaching real world claims issues that could affect liability, coverage, and uncovering potential fraud.

I help teach a one day seminar on marine policies and marine claims to the New Hampshire Independent Insurance Agent Association. The seminar is intended as an introduction to the complexities of marine insurance for the small agent.

I've also been a guest lecturer at Steve Knox's annual seminar on marine claims in Norfolk, Virginia. ^Back to Top

International Association of Marine Investigators

IAMI runs an annual training seminar to help educate private industry and law enforcement investigators in the intricacies of marine related fraud, theft, fire and accident investigation. I recently helped out at the San Diego conference by teaching Forensic Photography and Failure Analysis of Fiberglass Composites. ^Back to Top

Additional Events

I've given talks as a featured speaker and as part of a panel for a variety of boating groups. This list includes:

  The American Boat Builders and Repairer's Association Salvage Negotiation
  The Mariner's Club (New England Chapter) Failure Analysis & Claims
  US Power Squadron Catastrophe Response
  Lawley Owner's Association Valuation of Classic Yachts

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