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C-PORT Seeks Nominations for Awards


C-PORT Seeks Nominations for Two Prestigious Awards

C-PORT, Conference of Professional Operators for Response Towing, is seeking nominations for two prestigious awards to be presented at the 28th C-PORT Conference and Membership Meeting being held on November 19- November 21, 2014.  The two awards are the AFRAS Lifesaving Award and the C-PORT Compass Rose Award.

AFRAS Lifesaving Award - Going on its fifth year, C-PORT is pleased to announce that AFRAS (Association for Rescue at Sea) will continue its program to annually recognize a deserving member of C-PORT for their rescue efforts.  The Association for Rescue at Sea (AFRAS) was formed in 1976 to foster traditional maritime search and rescue values through suitable recognition of deserving personnel, and to facilitate cooperation in search and rescue.  The Award will be conferred on a C-PORT member individual or group of individuals who perform exceptional acts in attempting to save life in the maritime environment. Instances where the rescuer places their own life at risk will be given highest consideration. The Award may be given posthumously.   

Tina Cardone, executive director, C-PORT, stated, “This will be the fifth year for this celebrated award.  The C-PORT membership has many heroes, and we are grateful for the recognition they receive for their selfless deeds in serving the boating public.” The first AFRAS Award presented in to a C-PORT member was given in 2011 to Roger Slade and his daughter Andrenika (Nika) Slade of Vessel Assist Port Hadlock for the valiant rescue of four people, adrift in treacherous sea conditions with their small boat nearly awash.  In 2012, the award was presented to Jon Gridley of Sea Tow Clarks Hill Lake and Jim Masiongale who assisted Gridley that day for their courageous act in rescuing an unconscious person from the water during a storm.  Greg Mallek of Sea Tow Fort Lauderdale received the 2013 AFRAS Award for his heroic actions in rescuing a woman who had been washed overboard in a dangerous area.  Last year AFRAS awarded two deserving C-PORT members, Les Trafford, Sea Tow Shinnecock/Moriches and George Farrell and Daniel Higgins, TowBoatU.S. Yonkers.  Captain Steve Sawyer, USCG (Ret), President of AFRAS remarked, "The excellence of service depicted in this year's nominations was some of the highest we have seen. It was impossible to select one recipient." Trafford responded in treacherous surf and high wind conditions to a capsized trawler saving the life of one of the passengers.  Farrell and Higgins responded to a small plane crash in January locating the small aircraft and using training and skill, rescued nearly unconscious victims from the frigid water.

For this year’s award, the rescue must have occurred between November 1, 2013 and September 30, 2014. Nominations are to include a full description of the circumstances and events giving rise to the nomination and include such factors as:

                  Location of the incident
                  Prevailing weather conditions
                  Skill displayed
                  Determination to conduct the rescue operation
                  Exceptional courage demonstrated
                  Degree of risk involved

Nominations are sent directly to C-PORT.  Once the nominations are received, AFRAS will evaluate them on their merits and the award, if one is recognized, will be presented by AFRAS at the C-PORT Conference Banquet and Gala, November 20, 2014, during the 28th C-PORT Conference and Membership Meeting being held at West Palm Beach, FL. 

C-PORT Compass Rose Award - C-PORT is seeking nominations for the C-PORT Compass Rose Award.  This award is presented to someone who is dedicated to making the marine assistance industry better through their hard work and desire to make boating an enjoyable experience for everyone.  The recipient is a leader with true direction, high personal standards and will go above and beyond in any situation.  

“The concept for this award came to C-PORT through one of their members,” explained Cardone.  “Barrie McCune, owner of Poseidon Marine Towing and Salvage/TowBoatU.S. Islamorada tragically lost her son during a call to assist a boater.  She wanted to honor his devotion and commitment to an industry he loved.” C-PORT created the Compass Rose Award to honor all who show pride, outstanding commitment and true direction to the betterment of the marine assistance industry and the boating community. 

This will be the fourth year for this special award.  It was first presented in 2012 to Lee McCune of TowBoatU.S. Islamorada, posthumously, for his personification of the meaning of the award, always working for the betterment of the industry and the boater’s enjoyment.  In 2013, the award was presented to Joe Frohnhoefer, Founder and CEO of Sea Tow International. As depicted in his nomination, Frohnhoefer is one of the pioneers of the marine assistance industry, back in 1983 blazing new territory with the U.S. Coast Guard and working with Congress, and he continues to do so today.  Terry Hill, owner of TowBoatU.S. Potomac and current C-PORT Chairman, was presented with the award in 2014 for his continuous work in making the marine assistance industry through C-PORT more visible and viable to all Federal, State and Local agencies.

Nominations for this distinctive award may be sent directly to C-PORT, including the reasons this person should be considered for the Compass Rose Award.  This award will be presented at the C-PORT Banquet and Gala, November 20, 2014, during the 28th C-PORT Conference and Membership Meeting being held at West Palm Beach, FL. 

Cardone asked that nominations for both awards be emailed to or mailed directly to the C-PORT office at 3640-B3 North Federal Hwy #136, Lighthouse Point, FL 33064.  “Nominations may be sent at any time so long as they are received no later than October 2, 2014,” stated Cardone. “This allows sufficient time for the vetting of the nominations.”


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