At the Helm - MI Alumus named President and CEO of BC Ferries
Thursday, March 30, 2017

MI alumnus Mark F. Collins has been named President and CEO of BC Ferries.

A graduate of the Fisheries and Marine Institute (MI) of Memorial University is the incoming President and CEO of BC Ferries.

Mark F. Collins graduated from the Institute’s Diploma of Technology in Marine Engineering in 1986 and since that time has progressed through a number of senior roles across the maritime sector.

“On behalf of everyone at the Fisheries and Marine Institute, I want to congratulate Mr. Collins on an extraordinary career and wish him every success as he takes on this new leadership role with BC Ferries,” said Glenn Blackwood, vice-president, Memorial University (Marine Institute). “MI alumni are leaders all around the world in their chosen fields and we are very proud of the impacts those like Mr. Collins are making on the marine industries.”


Seafaring Success

Mr. Collins has 35 years of marine experience, 20 of which have been in executive leadership positions. Throughout his career, he has delivered more than $1 billion worth of projects on-time and on-budget.

After graduating from MI, Mr. Collins became a Marine Engineer Officer – serving on oil tankers, bulk carriers, container vessels and fishing vessels. He later served as President of Rolls Royce Marine Brazil and Italy and Vice President of Global Technical Services, CSL Group.

“The Marine Institute gave me the foundation to understand both the technical and business aspects of the marine industry,” said Mr. Collins, incoming President and CEO of BC Ferries and MI alumnus. “The MI awakened my curiosity in how global seaborne trade is organised and prompted me to eventually go on to study transportation and logistics at the Master’s level.”

In addition to his training at MI, Mr. Collins holds a Master of Business Administration (Transport and Logistics) – University of British Columbia and a Bachelor of Arts (Marine Geography) – Saint Mary's University, Halifax. He has also completed the Oxford Strategic Leadership Certificate – University of Oxford and French Language & International Business Certificate – Universite Canadienne en France.

CEO Role

Currently, Mr. Collins is Vice President of Strategic Planning & Community Engagement at BC Ferries and from 2004-2012 served as Vice President, Engineering with the organization.

On April 1, 2017 he will officially take over as President and CEO.

“I am most looking forward to making a difference for residents of ferry-dependant communities. Since ferry services are often lifeline services to coastal communities, reliable service that meets their needs is a vital part of this job,” continued Mr. Collins. “My years growing up in Newfoundland, which is after all a ferry dependant community, combined with my time at sea as a Marine Engineer have been vital to my path in the marine industry. Taken together these two experiences give me the perspective I need to understand the complexity and importance of the services we provide.”

Sound Advice

To new MI students and those beginning a career in the marine sector, Mr. Collins says, “My advice is to immerse yourself in your time at the MI, taking advantage of all the experience has to offer. Even after 30 years I use my MI education every day. Learn all you can and apply it in your working life; you will be pleasantly surprised how often your MI experience supports your career.”

His backgrounder notes ‘Mark F. Collins is a senior marine executive with demonstrated ability to lead complex industrial organizations in safe, reliable and financially sound operations. His lengthy marine experience, including as President of Rolls Royce Marine Brazil and Rolls Royce Marine Italy, provides Mr. Collins with the leadership skills for his new role as President and CEO of BC Ferries. Mr. Collins is married with three children, and resides in North Saanich, British Columbia.’

Under contract to the Province of British Columbia, BC Ferries is the service provider responsible for the delivery of safe, efficient and dependable ferry service along coastal British Columbia. The organization has more than 4500 employees, a fleet of 35 vessels and serves up to 47 ports on 24 routes throughout coastal British Columbia.