Horizon Lines, trying to rebuild after taking a major hit to its finances and management, named William A. Hamlin to the position of senior vice president of operations.
Hamlin is the latest in a new leadership group brought in after the federal government hit the Jones Act carrier with a $45 million penalty in an investigation into price fixing allegations in maritime trade involving Puerto Rico.
Horizon pleaded guilty in February to a felony antitrust charge. In addition, it agreed last year to pay $20 million to direct shippers to settle their claims under a class action. Horizon has till April 29 to decide whether to go through with the $20 million settlement, from which numerous shippers have opted out.
The plea bargain with the Department of Justice was followed by the retirement of long-time CEO Charles G. Raymond.
In his new role, Hamlin oversees ocean transportation services, inland services, the order-to-cash cycle, maintenance, safety, security, network operations, North American terminals and technology.
He is based in the Dallas operations center, which he helped develop during his tenure with the company's predecessor, Sea-Land Service. He reports to Brian Taylor, executive vice president and COO of Horizon Lines.
Hamlin joins Horizon Lines from Norwegian Cruise Line, where he has been executive vice president, responsible for fleet operations and new shipbuilding since 2004. He led the project team in France that built the $1.5 billion Norwegian Epic, the second-largest cruise ship ever built at that time.
Hamlin played an important role during the years of growth and expansion at Horizon's predecessor company Sea-Land. After joining the company in 1986, he managed the global container and chassis fleet, as well as rail and truck operations, and set an industry standard for container asset utilization. Hamlin was vice president of transportation and equipment operations when he left Sea-Land in 1999, after the international business was sold to A.P. Moller-Maersk Group.
He then joined American President Lines (now called APL) as vice president operations, responsible for all port, equipment and inland transportation for the Americas. He rose to president of APL North America and also served as president of APL's Eagle Marine Services unit, overseeing operations for four U.S. West Coast terminals in Los Angeles, Oakland, Seattle and Dutch Harbor, Alaska.
Hamlin began his career in Saudi Arabia, after graduating from the University of Maine. He held several positions in international trade and transportation in Riyadh and Jeddah before joining U.S. Lines, where he was stationed in both Saudi Arabia and Brazil.
Hamlin has served as a board member of the Pacific Maritime Association and the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association. He is a member of the board of the University of Denver Intermodal Transportation Institute, as well as other industry affiliations, including Chair of the Ocean Carrier Equipment Management Association and Co-Chair of the Intermodal Freight Transportation Working Group.