NAMMA Conference 2021: “Leading and Learning Through Uncertainty” (August 10-11, online)

COVID-19 profoundly disrupted all our lives. We have needed to continually adapt to new safety measures and financial challenges. Our courage has been tested in serving seafarers whom the pandemic has directly affected, and, in so many situations we could neither understand nor control, we have had our faith tested as well. We have also been given reason to hope: we have learned from the pandemic, and those lessons may instruct our work in years ahead. To reflect on what we have gone through and what comes next, NAMMA’s 2021 Annual Conference will be on the theme “Leading and Learning through Uncertainty”. The conference will be held online exclusively.


Conference platform website and Zoom.


Tuesday, August 10, 2021 (online)

  • 11 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. EDT – Opening Plenary Session – “Learning through Uncertainty”
    • Introduction – Deacon Paul Rosenblum, NAMMA President
    • Guy Platten, General Secretary, International Chamber of Shipping
  • 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. EDT – Panel Session – “Building Relationships Through the Pandemic”
    • Capt. Wayne Arguin, Director of Inspections and Compliance at Coast Guard Headquarters
    • David Heindel, Secretary-Treasurer, Seafarers’ International Union and Chairman, International Transport Workers’ Federation, Seafarers Section
    • Dr. Desai Shan, Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • 2:30 p.m – 3 p.m. – Daily Worship
  • 3:15 – 3:30 – NAMMA and Partners Program Update 1
    • Dr. Jason Zuidema, NAMMA
    • Phil Schifflin, Center for Mariner Advocacy, Seamen’s Church Institute of New York & New Jersey
  • 3:45 – 4:45 – Small Group Discussions – “Self-care of chaplains and staff”
  • 7:30 p.m. – Keynote Lecture – “Chaplaincy in Uncertain Times” – Alan T. Baker – (Rear Admiral, USN, retired, Chaplain of the Marine Corps (2006-2009), and author Foundations of Chaplaincy: A Practical Guide (Eerdmans, 2021). (full bio below).
  • 8:30 p.m. (informal fellowship groups on Zoom)

Wednesday, August 11, 2021 (online)

  • 11 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. EDT – Opening Plenary Session – “Leading through Uncertainty”
  • 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. EDT – Panel Session – “Resilience and Best Practice for Maritime Ministry”
    • Moderator and Introduction – Deacon John Archer, Stella Maris, Mobile, AL- “Learning from ‘Gangway Only’ Visits”
    • Joanne Bartosik, Seamen’s Church Institute, “Growing Christmas at Sea during the COVID-19 Crisis”
    • Rev. Cristi Chapman, Seattle Seafarers’ Center, “Retaining Volunteers through the Pandemic”
    • Chaplain Michelle DePooter, Montreal Ministry to Seafarers, “Personal Shopping for Seafarers: Lessons Learned”
  • 2:30 p.m – 3 p.m. EDT – Daily Worship
  • 3:15 – 3:30 p.m. EDT – NAMMA Program Update 2
    • Peter Tomlin (MNWB), International Port Welfare Partnership project – software presentation
  • 3:30 – 4:45 p.m. EDT – Small Group Discussions – “Best practice for vaccine programs for seafarers”
  • 7:30 p.m. EDT – NAMMA Talent Show (followed by informal fellowship groups)


$49USD (NAMMA Members) (Click here to register)

$79 (Associate or Non-members) (Click here to register)

Group rates are available, please contact us for more information.

For more information

Contact NAMMA/Jason Zuidema

Conference Planning Committee:

Steve Finnesy (Tampa Port Ministries), Deacon Paul Rosenblum (Stella Maris Charleston), Chaplain Michelle DePooter (Montreal Ministry to Seafarers), Timothy Wong (SCI Newark), Rev. Robert Roussel (Global Maritime Ministries), Rev. Judith Alltree (Mission to Seafarers – Southern Ontario), Kevin Walker (NAMMA), Dr. Jason Zuidema (NAMMA)

(NAMMA Annual General Meeting, August 25, 2 p.m. EDT via Zoom)

About our Keynote presenter:

Alan T. Baker

Alan T. “Blues” Baker is a deeply experienced chaplain also serving as a faith group supervisor of chaplain ministries. He endorses chaplains in health care, industrial, corporate, sea service, military, college, public safety, and correctional organizations throughout and beyond the United States. With an extensive background in education, chaplaincy, and organizational development, he has over twenty years of international leadership in complex organizations. His public service culminated in the U.S. Presidential nomination and Senate appointment to Rear Admiral. Dr. Baker is the only graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy promoted to this rank as a chaplain. In 2021, his book Foundations of Chaplaincy was released by Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. His previous chaplain experience includes service with the U.S. Coast Guard, cruise line Holland America, cargo shipping with Lykes Lines, and chaplain aboard U.S. Military Sealift Command SS Curtiss (T-AVB-4). Blues teaches courses at the U.S. Naval Academy, Fuller Theological Seminary, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and Wesley Theological Seminary. In 2014 he was appointed as Senior Fellow in the Naval Academy’s Vice Admiral Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership. He enjoys playing harmonica and is affectionately known by his nickname “Blues.” Alan and his wife, Marla, live in Maryland and enjoy grandparenting and golf. You can read more about Alan here.