The Maine Maritime Academy board of trustees selected Dr. William J. Brennan of Falmouth, Maine, to be the school’s next president. He is expected to take office in May 2010, said Victoria Larson, the board’s chair, after the quarterly meeting in Castine, Maine, on Friday.
“Dr. Brennan’s professional commitment to national oversight and policy to protect, advance, and maximize the world’s oceans is evident and impressive,” said Larson. “We are fortunate that his enthusiasm for the sea and its creatures has translated into a career of service and an interest in furthering that service through Maine Maritime Academy. His in-depth understanding of marine environmentalism, international maritime based trade and commerce, and commercial fisheries provides a strong platform for leadership. Dr. Brennan has demonstrated an ability to engage and inspire our students, faculty, and staff.”
Brennan succeeds Leonard Tyler, who has served as president of Maine Maritime Academy since 1995 and announced his retirement in February.
“I am humbled to be selected to lead the Maine Maritime Academy at this time in its proud history,” Brennan said. “I am honored to give back to the college, which has given so much to me and to my family over so many years. I am gratified to have an opportunity to help advance the mission of the Academy to prepare young women and men to become the global ocean leaders of tomorrow. And I am thrilled to move back to the Town of Castine and to once again become a member of the community where I grew up.”
Brennan is an authority on environmental policy relating to oceans, the atmosphere and maritime issues. He has served as the Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, as Administrator of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and as Commissioner of the Maine Department of Marine Resources, a cabinet-level state agency. In addition, Brennan served for several years as the Director of the U. S. Climate Change Science Program, managing the government-supported research of 13 federal agencies and White House Offices. He began his career at sea in the merchant marine, working in both the deck and engine departments, and as a fisherman in Maine’s commercial fisheries.
Brennan earned a Ph.D. degree in Ecology and Environmental Sciences at the University of Maine, an M.A. degree in Marine Affairs from the University of Rhode Island, and a B.S. degree in Marine Biology from the University of Maine. He is also the recipient of an honorary Doctor of Science degree from the University of Rhode Island. He is a Senior Fellow at the University of Massachusetts/Boston McCormack Graduate School of Policy Studies, a Senior Scholar at the University of Maine School of Law, and a Presidential Professor of Environmental Policy with joint appointment at the University of Maine’s School of Marine Sciences and the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center. He has served as the Sawyer Professor of Ocean Studies at Maine Maritime Academy.
Contact Thomas L. Gallagher at email@example.com.