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reotypes previously associated with the seafaring trade. For example, 10 years ago, it was challenging to keep in constant contact with family and friends. Just the advancements in so- cial media over the last decade have brought communication to the tips of our ? ngers. This only will continue to progress and make the transition from land to sea easier for everyone.
Your organization actively recruits women for mari- time and management roles. Beyond yourself and the current CEO, brie? y tell us about one or two oth- er success stories at Celebrity.
Our parent corporation, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., was the ? rst in the industry to promote a woman to captain for our sister brand, with Swedish mariner Captain Karin Stahre-Jan- son in May 2007. She was followed by Captain Lis Lauritzen in 2008. Both women are extremely well respected by their peers, guests and crew.
You are the Industry’s First-Ever American Female Cap- tain. That said; tell us about your most valuable men- tors who helped you get there. Can you choose one to talk about? What did they mean for you, and why?
I was fortunate to have found my life partner, who provided me unconditional support – personally and professionally. My husband, Nikola, is a chief engineer. He is a very patient man and loves to share his knowledge of all the technical aspects.
We were able to sail together, and – for example – after I would perform arrival or departure maneuvers, he would pro- comes with the respect earned through proven performance. vide unbiased feedback about my ‘driving’ ability based on
The biggest success is the actual promotion to captain itself. the use of power and overall ? nesse. Several peers have since accredited my maneuvering to a soft “woman’s touch,” but I
What advice would you give aspiring women who like to think that it was a bit of an inside advantage being mar- want to get into the maritime industry? ried to a very skilled and honest chief engineer.
The maritime industry is an amazing opportunity to see the world and make a positive impact on it. The maritime acad- During your climb to the top, you have managed ship emies in the U.S. can be perfect places to start out because logistics sailing globally and led several reposition- maritime still is a relatively growing industry with many op- ing cruises. What other jobs did you enjoy along the portunities; and my motto about the unknown is: You never way and which one was the most valuable in terms know if you want it until you try it. So, when you see an op- of preparing you for your current role? portunity, seize it. When you spot a problem, ? x it. When you I thoroughly enjoyed drydocks and newbuilds in the ship- want something, ask for it. yards. You gain an appreciation for the standard maintenance, design, naval architecture and hard work!
The role of women in the maritime industry is grow- ing, but is not yet representative of the numbers of Finally – you began your new role on board Celebrity women professionals in business. What can be done Summit in August 2015. What one thing do you hope about that? to bring on board with you that will put a unique
Times are changing and I believe there will be a much more stamp on your own brand of leadership? visible presence of women in the maritime industry. The in- Everyone I have worked with has a slightly different leader- creasing demand for quali? ed of? cers, men and women, is ship style based on their backgrounds. I hope to offer a unique there. Also lending to the growth of the industry are techno- experience for my team, and I look forward to pleasantly sur- logical advancements – they are eliminating some of the ste- prising some!
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