March 2021 OES Beacon OES Beacon

From the President (March 2021)

Christopher Whitt, OES President

I hope you are doing well during these interesting times.

We are entering an exciting period of challenges and opportunities. January of 2021 marked the start of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development[1]. The Ocean Decade is an unparalleled effort to bring together all areas of science and technology, business, and governance. Not only do we seek to better coordinate existing ocean research, but also to inspire the next generation of ocean engineers and scientists as well as raise awareness within public policy communities, business and industry, and society at large.

There are a multitude of organizations supporting the Ocean Decade. Within OES, we expect to have sessions at OCEANS conferences, emphasis within our publications[2], connections to workshops and symposia where practical, and more. We have formed an ad hoc committee to coordinate all OES Ocean Decade efforts, and our volunteers have already engaged with the Ocean Decade planning process. We expect healthy communication between the Society, the Ocean Decade, and other supporting organizations. Contact me if you have ideas for how the Society can support the goals of the Ocean Decade.

Of course, all this new activity is occurring in the context of the pandemic. We saw most of our activities switch to a virtual format in 2020, and through the incredible dedication of our volunteers, our first ever virtual Global OCEANS 2020 was successful. While many of our 2021 activities will continue to be virtual or hybrid, we are watching carefully and hoping that we can welcome you in person to the San Diego portion of the Global OCEANS 2021: San Diego – Porto conference in September. If you cannot attend in person, there will be a virtual option, which is being handled by the Porto committee, so that you can still participate in the conference, wherever you are.

I’d like to introduce to you several new volunteer leaders. As is typical, you elected six new AdCom members last year to serve a three-year term from January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2023. AdCom is the administrative and governing body of the IEEE Oceanic Engineering Society, responsible for representing you, our members, in all areas of decision-making for the long-term health of the Society, including conferences, publications, finances, technical activities, and member and student activities. The AdCom class of 2021 is Gerardo Acosta, Farheen Fauziya, Fausto Ferreira, Malcolm Heron, Katsuyoshi Kawaguchi, and Venugopalan Pallayil.

In December, AdCom elected new officers to ExCom. I was elected President, Venugopalan Pallayil was elected VP-Technical Activities, Fausto Ferreira was elected VP-Workshops and Symposia, and Marinna Martini was elected Secretary. Since the new ExCom officers were existing or newly elected AdCom members, this led to several appointments to AdCom: the appointed AdCom members are Rosmiwati Mohd-Mohktar, Michael Lamoureux, and Andreas Marouchos.

Speaking of elections, nominations are now open for the AdCom class of 2022 (nominations are due by March 31)[3].

We look forward to connecting with you soon, as we keep working to bring together the ocean engineering, science, and technology communities.