Friday, May 19, 2017

US Senator Honoured for Support of American Marine Industry

Jack Reed Receives Maritime Guardian Award
Shipping News Feature
US – The Daniel K. Inouye Institute honoured US Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island on Wednesday, May 17 for his long-standing support of the American marine industry. Joined by dozens of maritime and Senate leaders, Sen. Reed received the Daniel K. Inouye Maritime Guardian Award for his leadership and dedication to the sector.

Irene Hirano Inouye, widow of Sen. Inouye, presented the award to Sen. Reed, whose small coastal state of Rhode Island ranks fourth per capita among all the states for American maritime jobs. Sen. Reed is the ranking member of both the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, where he has consistently supported programmes important to the maritime industry. In 2016, Sen. Reed led the effort to restore federal funding for the Small Shipyard Grant Program which helps shipyards purchase needed equipment, improve efficiency, and train a skilled workforce for commercial shipyards while also supporting the military shipyard industrial base. Jennifer Sabas, Director of the Daniel K. Inouye Institute, said:

“We are honoured to make this presentation to Sen. Reed who steadfastly carries forward the high priority Sen. Inouye placed on a strong US maritime industry, which steps forward in service when called upon by our nation in times of crisis or conflict.”

Senator Jack Reed said upon receiving the award:

“I am deeply honoured to receive this award and grateful to Irene and the Inouye Institute. Senator Inouye was and continues to be an inspiration. He fought and served with great courage, integrity, and patriotism. To this day, his outstanding work on both the Appropriations and Commerce Committees continue to benefit Rhode Island’s maritime industry and our economy. We in the Ocean State are proud of our maritime heritage, and from tourism to commerce to transportation, marine-related businesses are an important part of our economic future. I am proud to support the hardworking men and women of the marine trades and I humbly accept this prestigious award on their behalf.”

The Daniel K. Inouye Maritime Guardian award is modelled after one of the first Hawaiian weapons ever seen in the new world. Collected on one of Captain Cook’s journeys into the Pacific, it was made of wood and imbedded with teeth from a great white shark. Called the ‘lei o mano’ it was reserved for the warrior who was responsible for protecting the maritime resources and for ensuring safe passage on the seas. Over his years in the Congress, Sen. Dan Inouye received the ‘lei o mano’ for his relentless efforts.

Prior to his death, Sen. Daniel K. Inouye had a distinguished tenure of more than 49 years of serving Hawaii in the U.S., the longest serving member to date. As president pro tempore of the Senate from 2010-2012, third in line for presidential succession, Sen. Inouye was the highest-ranking public official of Asian descent in United States history. For his heroic actions as a member of the famed 442nd Regimental Combat Team, resulting in the loss of his right arm, the World War II veteran ultimately earned the nation’s highest award for military valour, the Medal of Honour. The Daniel K. Inouye Institute was established in 2013 to honour his legacy.

A number of representatives from the American Maritime industry were present at the award ceremony and made their own commendations. James Henry, Chairman and President of the Transportation Institute, said:

“Sen. Reed’s support for the American Merchant Marine, which is crucial to our ability to project military forces around the world, is well-known and deeply appreciated. He is a very worthy recipient of this award.”

Thomas Allegretti, Chairman of the American Maritime Partnership, called Sen. Reed ‘…a champion of our industry and a worthy recipient of this award named in honour of Sen. Inouye, a great American leader.’