The United States Maritime Administration on Thursday announced that Rear Admiral James Helis, Superintendent of the United States Merchant Marine Academy since 2012, has accepted a position at MARAD headquarters in Washington, D.C., where he will serve as Special Assistant to the Administrator.
“During his six-year assignment as Superintendent, Helis led the response to many complex issues including, financial and management issues which had threatened USMMA’s accreditation,” MARAD said in a statement. “Under his leadership, the Academy launched several major construction projects as part of its Capital Improvement Plan. Today, the Academy remains fully accredited and the student body’s educational experience has been enhanced by much needed improvements to the facilities where Midshipmen learn, live, eat, and study.”
The Administration said Admiral Helis will continue lead USMMA while it conducts a search for a new Superintendent.
“During this transition period, it is our priority to find an exceptional person to lead the Academy into the future, while still maintaining a strong and effective organization,” MARAD said.
“We thank Admiral Helis for his service, and for his willingness to serve through the transition. A Change of Command ceremony is planned for later this summer,” the statement concluded.