April 20th, 2017 • Renaissance Seattle Hotel • Seattle, Washington


Steve Becker

F/V Ocean Peace

Steve is the senior port engineer, project manager at Ocean Peace, Inc., Vessel Management Group. His main area of expertise is the conversion or modification of the vessels, with project development and implementation as his main focus. He has extensive experience in converting the older refrigeration systems to a more modern and efficient design, and with that, a large increase in productivity of the factories. On the C/P Arctic Fjord, they increased the freezing capacity from 65 tons per day to over 140 tons, and on the F/V Ocean Peace, they increased from around 45 tons per day to over 120 tons.


Steve started going to sea in 1972 on ocean going tugs running between Puget Sound, San Diego and the Hawaiian islands. Then, at the age of 23, he became chief engineer for Sause Brothers in Coos Bay, Oregon.


In 1985 he went to work as a chief for Dona Fisheries and assisted converting a 165’ OSV into the F/V Dona Paulita. After a couple years of JV fishing, he left the smaller catcher vessels and went to work on the first of several Pollock factory trawlers. The first was the Ocean Rover for a couple years, then the C/P Arctic Fjord for 15 years. He then spent a year or so on the F/V Highland Light, until American Seafoods purchased the vessel and took it out of service.


In Jan of 2008, Steve started working on the F/V Ocean Peace where he was the chief engineer as well as the project manager for the sponson project that was completed on that vessel in the fall and winter of 2011. This project increased the cargo hold capacity by about 40%, fuel by 25% and made a dramatic improvement in the vessels stability.


In 2014 he was the project manager for the resurrection of the F/V Green Hope. This project included a new drive system including a new main engine, reduction gear and CPP system, all new hydraulics, a new wheelhouse and a complete remodel of the staterooms and galley. A new RSW system was also installed.


He is currently working on the two FCA vessels, acquired in February, to improve their reliability and production. The F/T Alaska Warrior is currently at Pier 91 getting a new factory installed.

Michael Catsi

Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA)

Appointed to this position in 2010, Mr. Catsi pursues business development opportunities, oversees the Authority’s communications, and assists clients through the Authority’s intake process in partnership with AIDEA’s finance and development staff. Michael serves as the chair of AIDEA’s Project Suitability Committee, and as a member of AIDEA’s project review committees.


Prior to joining the Authority, Michael led economic development organizations as executive director of the Southwest Alaska Municipal Conference and the Skagway Development Corporation. Michael currently serves as president of the Alaska Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and as a member of the advisory board for the Launch:Alaska business accelerator. Michael has served as president of the Alaska Partnership for Economic Development, was elected to the Skagway City Council, and served on the board of the Alaska Municipal League.


Michael graduated from the University of New South Wales, Australia with a bachelor of science in geography, and he is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD).

Bob Desautel

Global Seas
Nina Fisheries, Inc.

Bob Desautel is co-founder, president, and chief executive officer of Global Seas and Nina Fisheries, Inc. In 1994, he co-founded Nina Fisheries, a business that later developed internationally as it extended to Chile and Argentina in 1998. In 2001, Bob co-founded Global Seas, a subsidiary of Nina Fisheries, that quickly became one of the West Coast’s premier vessel management companies. Under Bob’s direction, Global Seas expanded its business enterprise to the East Coast and ventured into the maritime research field in 2002.


In 1978, while studying business at the University of Nevada, Bob began his career as a deckhand fishing in the North Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea. In 1980, he advanced to the role of captain and served as captain of various fishing vessels until 2002, when he retired from the ocean to focus on the expansion of Global Seas.


Bob has served as president and member of the board of the North Pacific Fishing Vessel Owners’ Association, advocating safety education for the commercial fishing industry by providing information about USCG requirements, OSHA compliance standards, MARPOL, hands-on training programs, and safety seminars and workshops. In 1993, Bob co-founded United Catcher Boats, served as a member of the board and later as vice president, all the while promoting the organization’s importance to Bering Sea, Gulf of Alaska and West Coast fisheries. His efforts serving on these boards, as well as his involvement in other various organizations, have improved safety and created efficiencies in the commercial fishing and maritime industries. Bob currently possesses a United States Coast Guard (issue no.6) Masters 3000 ITC license.

Bob C. Donegan


Bob works at Ivar’s new offices on renovated Pier 54 managing the latest crisis or opportunity. Ivar’s operates stores from Bellingham to Tacoma and east to Spokane, and its world famous clam chowder is sold in about 13,000 locations throughout the US, Canada, Mexico and sometimes China and Japan. Ivar’s produced enough white chowder last year to fill 14777-200s, or if stacked in 8-ounce cups, to reach as tall as 134 Mt. Rainiers.


Lately, Bob has focused on the construction of the tunnel and seawall along Seattle’s waterfront and the renovation of Pier 54. In more typical times, he manages marketing, finance, insurance, purchasing, information systems, the chowder plant, store construction and remodeling for Ivar’s. In his 20 years at Ivar’s, he has seen the company open dozens of new locations,including in many major sports stadiums in the region.


Bob grew up in Milwaukee, graduated from the first UW in Madison, met his wife in graduate school in Connecticut, and moved to Seattle in 1984 so she could teach in the business school at the second UW. Prior to Ivar’s, Bob worked with Peet’s Coffee and about 40 start-up companies.


He sits on the boards of the Seattle Metro Chamber of Commerce, the Seattle Sports Commission, Chief Seattle Council of the Boy Scouts, the Seattle Historic Waterfront Association, and the new Washington Hospitality Assn. He and his wife, Lisa, have two daughters and live in Richmond Beach.

Amy Duz


Amy Duz is president of iWorkWise, a consulting company specializing in the practical application of safety regulations and environmental regulations. She is a certified safety specialist, Region 10 OSHA Institute trainer, and former plant manager of an OSHA VPP site. Amy has been working with process safety and emergency response for more than two decades; she specializes in ammonia safety and compliance. Her experience with process safety management, risk management, and emergency response planning spans more than two decades.

Kenny Down

Blue North Fisheries

Kenny Down became Blue North’s president and CEO in 2012. Prior to joining Blue North, he served as the executive director of the Freezer Longline Coalition, spending more than four years lobbying, organizing and, most importantly, leading national policy in support of low-impact fishing efforts.


Before his political work, Mr. Down spent nearly 20 years in the Alaska longline fishing industry. He has worked as general manager in Alaska cod longline companies, and has broad experience as a port engineer, USCG licensed chief engineer and a fisherman at sea. Mr. Down is a board member of the Freezer Longline Coalition and the Alaska Longline Cod Commission; and he serves on multiple advisory boards of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.


In support of sustainable fisheries worldwide Kenny has worked in several advisory roles locally, nationally and internationally including serving on Governor-Elect Jay Inslee’s transition team as a member of his Transition Committee and serving internationally on the Prince of Wales charities advising the Prince’s Charities on sustainability measures to assure the health of the oceans resources. Kenny also served as an international advisor on the draft and review of the final document from the Prince’s Charities “Transitioning to Sustainable and Resilient Fisheries.”


In 2015 Kenny was appointed to the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council. The council is one of eight regional councils established by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act that prepare fishery management plans for marine fish stocks in their respective geographical areas of responsibility.

John Fisker-Andersen

Coastal Transportation, Inc.

John Fisker-Andersen has been the port engineer for Coastal Transportation, Inc. (CTI) since 1998. He is the 7th generation in a family involved with shipbuilding, ship owning and seafaring.


In 1993 John graduated from California Maritime Academy with a degree in marine engineering technology and a USCG 3rd Assistant Engineer Unlimited License.


He started his career with Sunmar Shipping sailing back and forth to the Russian Far East and eventually became the port engineer. Since joining CTI he has been involved with a wide array of experiences as the port engineer. He has been the project manager for several vessel repowers and lengthenings. Most recently he was the project manager for the design and construction of the M/V Coastal Standard.

Marcus Hartley

Northern Economics, Inc.

Marcus Hartley is president and principal economist at Northern Economics, Inc. (NEI) (www.NorthernEconomics.com), headquartered in Anchorage, AK with an office in Ballard, WA. Mr. Hartley is NEI’s primary fisheries economist with 28 years of experience in fishery management issues. He is actively involved in the regulatory regime of the North Pacific through projects for the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC) and has worked on nearly every allocation, access, and catch share issue for Alaska’s groundfish, halibut, crab, and salmon fisheries since 1989. Mr. Hartley has completed projects for a wide range of clients around the country including NOAA Fisheries Regional Offices throughout the US, the Pacific Fishery Management Council, and the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission, as well as other federal, state, and local agencies and NGOs.


Before joining NEI in 1997, he was senior economist at the NPFMC. Mr. Hartley has a thorough understanding of fishery management issues and the complex, often unexpected interactions and outcomes that occur with changes in the regulatory environment.


Mr. Hartley recently led the team that developed the first complete review of the American Fisheries Act for the NPFMC since a report to Congress in 2002. He also developed the Regulatory Impact Review of reductions in halibut prohibited species catch limits in the BSAI in 2015–16. In 2014 he led NEI’s effort to prepare the five-year review of the Amendment 80 fishery for the NPMFC. Currently, Mr. Hartley is the socioeconomics team leader on a multidisciplinary project for an NGO to assess the effects of catch share programs in groundfish fisheries in New England and on the West Coast. (See www.catchshareindicators.org.)

Scott Houghtaling


Scott Houghtaling is the branch chief for the Northwest Region of NOAA, NMFS, Financial Services. The office covers all of the US West Coast including Alaska, Hawaii, and the Pacific Territories.  Scott has been with NOAA since 1997 and has 29 years of banking experience.


The Financial Services Division (FSD) of NOAA, NMFS offers Fisheries Finance Program (FFP) loans.  The FFP is a direct government loan program that receives an annual loan authority from Congress to provide long-term loans to the aquaculture, mariculture, and commercial fisheries industries.  In addition, FSD provides halibut/sablefish quota share loans, BSAI crab quota loans, and CDQ loans.


Scott is a life-long resident of Washington State and holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Washington.

Brent Paine

United Catcher Boats

Brent Paine is the executive director of United Catcher Boats (UCB) and has served in this position since UCB’s inception in January 1994.  United Catcher Boats is a vessel owner trade association whose 72 members participate in the Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands and Gulf of Alaska pollock, Pacific cod and yellowfin sole trawl fisheries and West Coast whiting trawl fishery.  United Catcher Boats is quite active in the regional fishery council process (North Pacific and Pacific Fishery Management Councils), the Alaska Board of Fisheries, as well as on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.  On behalf of UCB, Brent participated in the development of the American Fisheries Act.  Prior to working for UCB, Brent served on the staff of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.  He has been involved in the Alaska commercial fisheries in one form or another for most of his life.  Brent received his MS of fisheries management from Oregon State University and his undergraduate degree at St. Olaf College.

Peter Philips

Philips Publishing Group

Peter is the president of Philips Publishing Group, publishers of trade journals for the maritime and transportation industries. In the years since Philips Publishing was founded by Peter’s father in 1983, the company has grown to become the largest maritime and transportation publishing house on the West Coast. Titles include Pacific Maritime Magazine, aimed at West Coast commercial vessel and terminal operators, FOGHORN, the official publication of the Passenger Vessel Association, Clipper Vacations Magazine, published for Seattle’s Clipper Navigation, Catalina Express Magazine, published for Catalina Express, Pacific Fisheries Review and Fishermen’s News, the oldest commercial fishing publication on the Pacific Coast.


In addition to publishing trade journals, Philips Publishing also specializes in creative design services for the maritime and transportation industries, with clients across the country. Peter is the immediate past president of the Seattle Marine Business Coalition, which represents the interests of marine industrial land users. Peter is past president of the Port of Seattle Chapter of the Propeller Club, and past regional vice president, West Coast, of the International Propeller Club. Peter has a BA in history from Whitman College, and has been employed in the maritime publishing field since 1985.

Chad See

Freezer Longline Coalition

Chad See is the executive director of the Freezer Longline Coalition. Mr. See focuses much of his energies advocating on issues pending before the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.  He is a member of the Council’s Observer Advisory Committee and the Steller Sea Lion Mitigation Committee.  Prior to working for the longline group, Mr. See spent 13 years in Washington, DC, working most recently as a member of the Public Policy and Law practice at K&L Gates LLP, a global law and lobbying firm. At K&L Gates, he primarily represented Pacific Northwest-based clients on federal funding and budget-related matters before Congress and the Administration. He often worked with maritime and commercial fishing interests in the Pacific Northwest and other industry stakeholders across the country. Before joining K&L Gates, Mr. See worked in the US Senate for Senators Patty Murray and Jay Rockefeller. See, a Ballard native, also served for three years as the president of the Washington State Society. He currently serves as a board member for the United Fishermen of Alaska and Northwest Seaport. The Freezer Longline Coalition represents owners and operators of longline catcher processor vessels in the Alaska cod fishery. The vessels harvest Alaska cod using hook-and-line gear, then individually process the fish at sea. The fleet has an extensive catch history in the Alaska cod fishery, which accounts for over 90% of the sector’s revenues. The fleet consists of highly specialized vessels that are based in both Washington and Alaska.

Rodney Wendt

Washington Economic Development Finance Authority

Rodney Wendt is the executive director of the Washington Economic Development Finance Authority (WEDFA), a statewide conduit bond financing agency.  At WEDFA, he has assisted a wide variety of waste disposal, manufacturing and nonprofit enterprises in obtaining low-cost bond financing. Prior to joining WEDFA in 2007, Mr. Wendt had a 14 year career as an attorney in private practice. His practice focused exclusively on state and local government debt finance.

Inoka Wijesekera

Highland Refrigeration

Inoka is a project engineer at Highland Refrigeration in Seattle. She holds a BS degree in chemical engineering and has more than 5 years of experience in food manufacturing operations, capital project management, Process Safety Management and Risk Management Plan (PSM/RMP).  Prior to joining Highland’s team, she was a senior project engineer for manufacturing services at Tyson Foods, Inc., Springdale, Arkansas. Her experience includes all aspects of refrigeration project management, from performing refrigeration system designs, including execution of projects, feasibility studies, capital projects, system startups, and troubleshooting. Before joining the refrigeration team, Inoka was part of the Process Safety Management (PSM) engineering team at Tyson Foods. Her responsibilities were to provide federal code guidance and assistance with PSM/RMP programs; perform ammonia and chlorine release engineering calculations; conduct, generate reports and follow-up on 3-year compliance audits to maintain adherence to OSHA and EPA guidelines and regulations for Tyson facilities company wide. She also managed and assisted with the development of the training documents for the PSM/RMP audit software tool for all plant operating personnel and corporate PSM engineers.

Garth Wilcox, PE


Garth Wilcox is a senior naval architect at Glosten and supports the firm’s work in both new construction and refit projects involving fishing vessels, research vessels, ferries, and various floating structures. Garth is currently project manager and lead naval architect for the design of the 330-foot Ro/Ro passenger ferry to replace Alaska Marine Highway System’s M/V Tustumena. Prior to joining Glosten, Garth spent 13 years at Marco Shipyard, Inc. While at Marco, he was the project naval architect for four longliners of two classes, seven tugs, and a research/passenger vessel. Garth was involved in numerous fishing vessel conversions, sponsonings, and lengthenings to JV trawlers, RSW trawlers, factory trawlers, factory long liners, and crabber-processers. Garth’s strength lies in his familiarity with all aspects of the marine industry and his ability to integrate differing aspects of a project into a functional whole. Garth has also sailed over 70,000 ocean miles on a self-prepared and outfitted 31-foot cutter.

Chris Woodley

Groundfish Forum

Chris Woodley is the executive director of Groundfish Forum where he is responsible for promoting fishery and regulatory policies that support Amendment 80 fisheries in the Bering Sea, Aleutian Islands and Gulf of Alaska. Prior to joining Groundfish Forum, Chris served 24 years in the US Coast Guard specializing in safety and environmental compliance, marine casualty investigations and waterways management in Alaska, Washington and Hawaii. He retired from the service as a captain in 2014 and now serves on the US Coast Guard’s Fishing Vessel Safety Advisory Committee.