Welcome to our family…the Blessey Marine family! In 1978, I began the original Blessey Enterprises as an oil trading firm while working from a garage office in my home. Today, we have grown the Blessey Marine family of companies into one of the most respected liquid cargo operators in the inland marine transportation segment. Over the years, many bountiful and some lean, my own personal life experiences helped me create a company culture where there are no “Misters”; where we believe that open and honest communication between ownership and employees is essential; where our commitment to the safety of our mariners, to customer service, and to the protection of the environment is paramount to all that we do. I enshrined these and similar ideals to be the pillars of our Corporate Purpose Statement early on in our existence, and our Corporate Purpose Statement – our company Bible, if you will – continues to guide us in our daily operations.
Years ago, another industry executive asked me about my exit strategy. I knew exactly what he meant, but we did not share the same vision. In my mind, I wanted to live a long and healthy life, work albeit at a lesser pace until the end, and finally have my family make it a second-generation company. For the past fifteen years, my son-in-law Clark Todd has excelled in the role of President and Chief Operating Officer as he assumed more and more of the day-to-day operational decisions. Over the last two decades, he has forged relationships with our mariners and our office employees similar to those that I formed in the early days of our company. Clark has garnered the respect of other industry leaders and will serve several years in Executive leadership at American Waterway Operators. I am proud of the vision that he has for Blessey Marine as he takes it forward into a fifth decade of operations, expanding our breadth of services as well as our geographic reach, all while focusing on our best and brightest asset: our employees. My other son-in-law, Daniel Wisner, leads our Vessel and Crew Logistics groups as well as our Purchasing Department. Working together with them, my dream for a second generation family business has come true. I am confident in the leadership they possess and am so very proud of our people.
I have always said, ‘surround yourself with great people and great things will happen…and they have!’ The company that we have built over the years stands as a testament to the people who call Blessey Marine their ‘home.’ I invite you to visit our facilities and our equipment and to visit with our employees; let them be the telltale of our successes and our dedication to the inland industry.
Walter E. Blessey, Jr.