WISTA Bermuda Celebrates 6th Anniversary

November 23, 2022 | 0 Comments

WISTA Bermuda, the local chapter of the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association [WISTA] held an anniversary social for its members and friends in the maritime sector.

A spokesperson said, “This year marks the sixth anniversary of WISTA Bermuda. The Bermuda branch was established in October 2016 as a chapter of WISTA International.

“WISTA International network boasts 54 National Associations, an aggregate of 3,800 members and has an unparalleled reach, unique collective insight and a vivid ambition to minimize the existing gender leadership gap in the maritime sector.

“WISTA Bermuda members celebrated the 6 year milestone overseas and locally.

WISTA Bermuda Nov 23 2022

“On 26 – 28 October 2022, four directors of WISTA Bermuda attended the 42nd WISTA International AGM and Conference in Geneva, Switzerland. The local representatives joined with over 300 female maritime professionals under the theme of ‘Collaboration for Sustainability – Cross-Industry Solutions for the Future” – understanding that it is only together, that we can make lasting change.

“The speakers and panelists at the Conference addressed subjects such as technology, fuel types, climate change, sustainability, DEI [Diversity, Equity and Inclusion] and supply chain. Notable was a presentation by Fred Kennedy of the IMO, negotiator in the Black Sea Grain Initiative (which is an agreement between Russia, Ukraine and Turkey to transport grain from Ukraine) and the demonstration of advances in autonomous vessels and AI technology.

“Then on 3 November 2022, a local celebration was then held for WISTA Bermuda members and friends. President Heather warmly welcomed members to the social as she shared highlights of the WISTA International Conference and explained the importance of WISTA for the Island. “Simply put, life in Bermuda depends on the shipping and trade industry and as women make up 50% of the population, we do and can make a difference” said Heather

“When we think of the maritime industry… we often think only of those self-propelled objects floating on water – ships. But the industry is much more. One needs to think globally….. to think about the technology, communication and logistics that is behind transporting items ..the types of expertise needed …. Engineers, architects, freight and cargo agents, environmentalists, warehouse logistics managers, human resources, IT, finance, drivers, pilots, vehicle technicians….many of us are [adjacent to] in the shipping and trade industry and don’t realize it; nor do we realize how critical the fluidity of trade is to a comfortable life in Bermuda”.

“The anniversary provided an opportunity to both celebrate and encourage women in the shipping industry to join WISTA Bermuda so they can take advantage of the networking and educational offerings afforded to members of this international network.

“Although events were difficult to hold during the Covid-19 pandemic, the President pointed to exciting initiatives in the pipelines including:

  • SheCEO, a training program to develop female CEOs in the maritime sector, in conjunction with the IMO, industry specialists and university professors; and
  • Speakers Bureau – a website directory of females in the maritime industry willing to acts as panelists and speakers at conferences and other events.

“The anniversary celebration concluded with President Cooper introducing and thanking the current slate of directors and officers of WISTA Bermuda including:

  • Heather Cooper President and Chairman
  • Cheryl Hayward-Chew Vice President
  • Tammy Richardson-Augustus Chief Legal Officer / Press Officer
  • Carmen Tucker Event Committee
  • Donnelle Swan Web Master
  • Angelique Burgess Immediate Past President
  • Laura Blee Treasurer
  • Vera Lopes Event Committee
  • Consolidated Services Limited Secretary
  • Jennifer M. Kelly Assistant Secretary

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