The executive director of the Navy League of the United States told the MTD Executive Board that her organization wants to work in partnership with the affiliates and Port Councils of the Maritime Trades.
“We’re there to connect the dots about the global supply chain to support these grassroots efforts including the Jones Act, the Maritime Security Program, cargo preference, the maritime training academy vessels, and, of course, the Military2Maritime program that the Navy League believes is so, so important,” retired Coast Guard Read Admiral Cari Thomas said in San Antonio on March 10.
The Navy League is a civilian advocacy group promoting the nation’s sea services, including the U.S.-flag merchant marine. The MTD has maintained a long working relationship with the organization.
Thomas, who served 32 years in the Coast Guard, told the board and guests that the Navy League’s grassroots education takes several forms.
“We’re emphasizing how the U.S.-flag merchant marine supports the national defense and domestically the importance of shipbuilding, the importance of the marine transportation system, and always emphasizing the critical infrastructure as well from the energy side of the marine transportation system to the need domestically to protect our ports,” she pointed out.
Additional Navy League priorities that she cited include funding for such programs as Title XI Shipbuilding Loan Guarantee, the Ready Reserve Fleet and harbor maintenance. She explained that the Navy League has a series of councils around the country and the world willing to work together with the MTD’s Port Maritime Councils. She said many of her councils support “sea cadet” programs to educate young people on the importance of America’s sea services.
She reminded all that the Navy League wants to work in partnership with the U.S.-flag industry, declaring, “Americans do have the best mariners.”