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darrell bate

Darrell Bate
Head of Quality Assurance in Further Education and Ofsted Inspector

Darrell began his maritime career with the Cunard Steamship Company Ltd at the age of 16 and completed a four year deck officer cadetship, studying at the College of Nautical Studies in Warsash.  He obtained his Class 3 Certificate of Competency and HNC in Nautical Science and served as third officer aboard general cargo vessels trading worldwide.  In 1983 he came ashore to take up a ship operations post with Kearvaig Shipping, the UK operator for Salen Shipping.   This led to a job with Genchem Chartering, a specialist firm in chemical transportation based in London.  During this time Darrell successfully passed his Chartered Shipbroker examinations and became a member of the Chartered Institute of Shipbrokers.  He worked latterly as shipbroker with Baltic Exchange-based Van Ommeren Marine before leaving the industry in 1988 to work in retail management.  He had a brief spell back at sea in the early nineties serving as 2nd Officer aboard supertankers bound for demolition.

In 1996 Darrell retrained as an NVQ Trainer/Assessor and began a new career in post 16 education and training, obtaining a Certificate in Education and BSc in Education and Training.  He has worked in both colleges and private training providers in a number of curriculum roles including lecturer, Head of School, Quality Manager and Senior Manager.  In 2009 he was appointed additional inspector with Ofsted and now inspects for them on a freelance basis.  His current role is the lead manager for performance and data at a large London further education college.

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Ian Adams

Ian has been involved in the shipping industry for many years in various capacities with P&O Cruises, Deep Sea Seals, Hamworthy (now part of Wärtsilä) and the International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA). More recently he has been running
his own consultancy and research business focusing on fuel oil quality and bunkering, acting as an expert witness in bunker disputes as well as presenting at conferences around the world.

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Dr. Iliana Christodoulou-Varotsi
Maîtrise, DEA, Doctorat
Legal Consultant and Independent Trainer

Dr Christodoulou-Varotsi is a legal and academic expert with an international educational and professional background specialised in maritime and EU law. She has been a member of the Athens Bar Association (Greece) since 1995 and is currently involved with consulting work, legal education and training (with Lloyd’s Maritime Academy and with an international ship classification society). She is also a certified trainer and lecturer in Greece, as well as an accredited mediator. In 2018 she will be releasing the book Marine Pollution Control: Legal and Managerial Frameworks, which is part of the Lloyd's Practical Shipping Guides series.

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John Hunter
Principal Director, Armor Business Solutions

John has a BSc in Civil Engineering from the University of Surrey UK, a Mate’s ticket after serving in the UK Merchant Marine with Blue Star Line and a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.

He has extensive experience in business analysis and business process re-engineering; in managing people, from multi-cultural teams of Subject Matter Experts to unionised blue collar work forces; in project management; in health and safety; in terminal equipment maintenance and software development including out-sourcing.

He is currently an independent consultant, based in Melbourne, Australia, and is also an Associate Consultant for Thompson Clarke Shipping, Australia's leading maritime consultancy firm.

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Nick Willis

Nick is the Managing Director of the Ship Valuation Consultancy Ltd (SVC) which provides specialised commercial consultancy and valuation services to the shipping industry

Nick spent fifteen years as a competitive Sale and Purchase Broker which involved the successful conclusion of over 200 ships as well as considerable valuation work for Banks, Lawyers and Owners. Nick was also part of the London Shipping Consultancy where he was a Commercial Consultant and Valuations Manager.

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Niels Bjørn Mortensen Master Mariner & Naval Architect

The seagoing career started in 1971 on tankers, but later on it was mostly in General Cargo, Containers and Bulk. The career included several trips to Greenland and to the Antarctic. Gained a Navigator’s certificate in 1978 and Master’s certificate in 1979 and served as deck officer in the East Asiatic Company until 1983 on containerships and con-bulkers.

Commenced studies at Denmark’s Technical University in Helsingør in 1983, graduating as Naval Architect in 1987. Worked in the Basic Design Department of Burmeister & Wain Shipyard from 1987 to 1996 and became Head of Department in 1994. During that time a large number of tankers, OBOs and bulk carriers were designed and built at the yard. Participated in approx. 25 trial trips during those years.

From 1996 and onwards employed by BIMCO as technical consultant and from 2002 as Head of the Marine Department. Attended some 6-10 IMO meetings per year during that period. Participated in the annual Tripartite meeting (Class, Shipbuilders and Shipowners) from 2002 – 2009. From 2002 member of ClassNK Danish Technical Committee and from 2003 member of Korean Register European Committee. Vice Chairman of IACS QSCS.

From 1 March 2010 Director of Regulatory Affairs in Maersk Maritime Technology, A.P.Moller-Maersk. Representing Maersk Line in World Shipping Council’s Environmental Advisory Committee. From 2011 a member Bureau Veritas’ Nordic Committee and of Lloyd’s Register’s Technical Committee. Chairing the Technical Committee of the Danish Shipowners’ Association. From 2014 member of BIMCO’s Marine Committee.

Appointed Expert Judge at the Danish Maritime and Trade Court in 2014.

Niels Bjørn resigned from A.P.Moller-Maersk in August 2016 and left by end of that year. Since then he has travelled the world and been involved in conferences, consultative work and writing articles.


Rawindaran V. Nair MSc, LLM, PhD

Dr Nair has been involved with the maritime industry in public policy affairs as well as in academic teaching and research for over 40 years.

He is currently active in research on international seaborne trade and maritime transport law and recently published a book on the economic regulation of the container liner shipping industry, which is a reference text for postgraduate studies.

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Chronis Kapalidis 

Chronis Kapalidis is an Academy Stavros Niarchos Foundation Fellow at the International Security Department, Chatham House. He is also a Visiting Research Fellow of the Dartmouth Centre for SeaPower and Strategy, Plymouth University, a member of ECPR and a Senior Research Fellow of the Maritime & Seapower Analyses Group, Athens. He has over 15 years of professional experience as a Lieutenant Commander in the Hellenic Navy where he specialised in IT infrastructure, Operations and Intelligence Analysis. Additionally, he is a part-time lecturer and tutor in military HE and a certified Port Facility Security Officer (PFSO) instructor. He has also published widely on Maritime Security, Cybersecurity and the migrant crisis in Europe.

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Captain John Dickie, BA
Joint Development Associates Limited (JDass Ltd)

Captain Dickie has spent the last 40 years in the maritime industry.  This has encompassed 20 years at sea from cadet to command and on various ship types from oil, chemical and gas including combination carriers, bulk carriers and container ships. John was manager of the Marine Technical Division for a survey company in the middle east which he helped set up, as well as having been a marine superintendent and operations manager.  Five years were spent in an IACS member as head of the ISM Code, which involved being Chairman of the IACS ad hoc Group ISM Code. Plus, liaison manager to the USCG and CEFIC for ISM Code matters on behalf of IACS. John has qualifications in auditing to the following standards, ISO 9000, 14000, 18000, SA8000 and ISM Code.

Becoming a lecturer was an important step and the years spent teaching were most enjoyable. During this time John took the opportunity to enhance his own credentials with various teaching qualifications as well as completing a BA degree in Adult Education. In the summer of 2010 John set up his own company, JDass Ltd, providing bespoke training to companies, ensuring the client requirement is met whilst still meeting the many requirements of legislation within the maritime industry.

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Semiramis Koliou-Contogoula 
Post Fixtures Analyst, Navig8 Europe Limited 

Semiramis has many years of experience working with major shipping companies in Greece and the UK. Her expertise has been gained working in a broad range of departments including operations, crewing, chartering, freight collection, claims and insurance, and accounting.

Semiramis has also authored modules for the Lloyd’s Maritime Academy Diploma in Maritime Business Management, and was a lecturer of the Shipping, Transport and Logistics department at BCA College in Athens, which collaborates with London Metropolitan University.

She holds a degree in International Shipping from the University of Plymouth. She majored in Economics with a minor in Shipping Management and Operations when studying at postgraduate level with the College of Southeastern Europe.