Markus puttich

Head of Port & Ground Operations,

TUI Cruises

Marcus Puttich, a certified ship agent by the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, started his career in the port agency department of Biehl & Company in the ports of Houston and New York. Before joining TUI Cruises in January 2014, Marcus received Bachelor of Arts degree in Cruise Industry Management from the Bremerhaven University of Applied Sciences and graduated with a Master of Science with Distinction in Maritime Operations from the Liverpool John Moores University.

Marcus currently holds the position of Head of Port & Ground Operations at TUI Cruises and is in charge for worldwide port and ground operations. His responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the port and ground agency selection, the economic and operational aspects for all ports of call, as well as strategic decision-making in the port & ground operations of TUI Cruises.

Sander Groothuis

Marine Operations Director

The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection

Sander Groothuis joined The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection in August 2018 as Director of Marine Operations. In this role, Mr. Groothuis oversees the management of the yachts from a technical and nautical perspective and is responsible for deck and engine crewing.


Prior to joining The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection, Mr. Groothuis served as Director of Marine and Safety Operations at Windstar Cruises where he also sailed as a Captain. Prior to joining Windstar Cruises, Mr. Groothuis worked his way up the ranks at Holland America Line from Deck Officer to Ship Security Officer, then to Chief Officer and Staff Captain.

Mr. Groothuis holds a Bachelor degree in Maritime Sciences and a Master degree in Maritime Economics and Logistics.

Russel Daya

Executive Director, Marine & Port Operations, Port Developments & Itinerary Planning,


Disney Cruise Line

Russell provides operational direction and support to the Disney Cruise Line fleet for marine and port operations. His responsibilities also include worldwide port developments and itinerary planning. As part of his role he has responsibility to maintain current, and develop new government and port relationships worldwide.

He previously spent five years located in the Disney Cruise Line office in London during the startup and stabilization period of that office, as Director of Marine, Port, Security Operations and Maritime Affairs. Russell is now positioned back in the Disney Cruise Line office in Celebration Florida.

He joined Disney Cruise Line in 1998 as the Manager of Marine Operations. From 2002 to 2003, he served as Staff Captain onboard the Disney Magic and Disney Wonder cruise ships.

Prior to joining Disney Cruise Line, Russell served for 7 years as a captain for Stena Line Cruise Ferries on various continental routes in Europe as part of his 40 years of maritime industry experience.

He is a member of the Nautical Institute, a group dedicated to promoting and coordinating nautical studies and marine.


Roxanne Onufriyenko

Manager Marine & Port Operations

Global Cruise Lines Ltd (part of Global Maritime Group)


Following over a decade in chartering and operations of cargo vessels, Roxanne joined Global Maritime Group in 2011 initially dealing with cargo vessels under GMG management at the time and gradually getting involved in company’s main segment – cruise. Currently she manages the marine and port operations of 5 cruise ships (and as of April 2019 – 6 ships) fully managed/operated by GMG and trading worldwide for Cruise & Maritime Voyages, TransOcean Kreuzfahrten, Rivages du Monde. Her Marine & Port Operations Team works closely with CMV, TransOcean, RDM and GMG Nautical Dept in developing and executing vessel’s cruise itineraries and deals among other with port bookings, port costs, liaising with Ports & Port Agents and attending to vessels’ day-to-day operations.

Dirk van der Raadt

Senior Manager of Deployment and Itinerary Planning

Dirk van der Raadt is the Senior Manager, Deployment and Itinerary Planning for Holland America Line. Appointed to this position in June 2015, he has the responsibility of researching, developing and implementing global deployment and itineraries for all vessels in the Holland America Line fleet.

Dirk started his career with Holland America Line in 2004 as an Apprentice Officer while attending the Maritime Academy of Amsterdam. In 2013, while sailing as Senior Navigation Officer, Dirk moved to the Seattle headquarters and served as Manager, Fleet Compliance Programs until he moved into his current role.

Dirk is a Master Mariner and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Maritime Sciences.

Emilio R. Freeman

Vice President, Destinations & Revenue Management

Emilio Freeman currently serves as the Vice President, Destinations and Revenue Management for SeaDream Yacht Club, with responsibility for the development of company’s itineraries, land adventures, port operations and revenue plans.

His professional background includes managerial positions in marketing and sales, operations and finance with luxury, mass market and expeditionary cruise operators in both the US and Europe. He has global destination planning experience and has travelled to over 250 ports and over 80 countries around the world.

Prior to joining SeaDream this year, Emilio held itinerary planning positions for Ritz Carlton Yacht Collection and Hurtigruten.  He also served as Director, Shore Excursions and Destination Delivery for Royal Caribbean’s Global Tour Operations team. In this role, he managed the shore excursion teams onboard all Royal, Celebrity and Azamara cruise fleets. Emilio was also the principal architect who developed Azamara’s night touring efforts including the brand’s exclusive destination events called “AzAmazing Evenings”.

Emilio was part of the initial management team which launched The World Residences at Sea.  In his twelve years there, he served as the

Senior Vice President, Operations and Global Destinations, and was responsible for all land-based operations and support for The World, including Tours, Purchasing, Port Agency relationships and Itinerary Planning.

Born and raised in Miami, Florida, Emilio earned a BA in Accounting from the University of Florida and a Master of International Business degree from Florida International University.  He is a former Certified Public Accountant in the State of Florida, was a member of the prestigious Explorers Club in New York City and served on the Executive Committee of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators.

Alessandro Carollo

Head of Port Operations - Europe, Middle East, Africa and India for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd

Alessandro Carollo is Head of Port Operations - Europe, Middle East, Africa and India for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.


His career in the maritime industry started in 2000 as port agent for several Italian and international agency service providers.

Responsible to deliver operational excellence, relationship management with authorities at both local and national level, selection and management of vendors and port agencies, development of new ports of call, as well as management of port costs budget for the three U.S. brands of RCCL; Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises.


Holds a PFSO certification and since 2014 he is a member of CLIA Europe’s Ports and Destinations sub-committee.

Captain Hernan Zini

Vice President, Worldwide Port Operations

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.

Captain Hernan Zini has over 27 years of cruise industry experience, including 14 years as a Captain for Royal Caribbean International.

He has been the Captain in charge of numerous ship buildings, including the construction of the largest ever built cruise ships at that time, Liberty of the Seas, Independence of the Seas and Allure of the Seas.

Since July 2018 to the present time he has held the position of Vice President, Worldwide Guest Port Services and Port Operations.

Prior to that he was Vice President, Talent Management.

Other previous positions he has held include Chief Operating Officer for SkySea Cruises, a joint venture of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and Ctrip.  In that role he was responsible for the company start-up and Hotel, Marine and Port Operations.

Hernan also served as Associate Vice President of Nautical Operations and Fleet Captain for Royal Caribbean International and Azamara Club Cruises.

He comes from Argentina where he graduated with Honors both at the Navy High School “Liceo Naval Militar Almirante Brown” and at the Nautical College of Argentina.  He obtained his Master Mariner degree at the age of 26.  He is a Navy Reserve Officer for the Argentinian Navy.  He also received executive management accreditation from IAE Business School.

Astrid Tomassen

head of communications

Port of Bergen

Astrid Tomassen, head of communications Port of Bergen. Works with Public Relations, media contact  and internal and external communications

Former journalist from The Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation(NRK)

Before joining Port of Bergen in 2017, she worked as a communications advisor in the PR business. She has also held the position as communications director of the Norwegian Competition Authority.

Lotfi Trabelsi

Manager, Port Operations & Guest Port Services

UK, Northern Europe and Baltics

RCL Cruises Ltd.

Lotfi  completed a Hospitality Management degree in 2002 and started off working in Hotels. He joined Royal Caribbean International in 2009 and sailed for 6 years on a variety of ships, while serving as a Guest Services Manager. Lotfi then joined the RCL Cruises Ltd office in the UK in 2015 where at first he was assigned to manage the guest experience for Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises brands in a variety of turnaround ports, now it has been a 2 years that he focuses on the guests and ships experiences in all the Northern European ports. Part of his job is to work and maintain a close relationship with the local ports authorities and nominated agents as well as working with the various RCCL office & shipboard employees. Lotfi also holds a PFSO Certificate and often participates in Ports & Destinations summits

James Langley

Director of Marine and Technical Operations

Saga Cruises Ltd

James started his career at sea in 2000, sailing in a variety of ranks as a deck officer on Cruise Ships, Ferries, Ro-Ro and High Speed Craft.

After a career of 10 years at sea James activated the next part of his career plan and came ashore spending 5 years at the International Chamber of Shipping in London, representing shipowners’ interests at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) and supporting ICS develop and promote industry best practice in amongst other areas safety, navigation, cargo operations and environmental protection.

In 2014 James joined Saga Cruises Limited at the start of the Company’s transformation journey as Marine Superintendent with responsibility for itinerary development and port operations.  In 2016 James took on additional responsibility as Head of Marine Operations.

Now Director of Marine and Technical Operations James has responsibility for the safe and efficient operation of the Saga fleet which includes ensuring that itineraries are planned and executed effectively exceeding customer expectations.

James is a keen runner and is running the London Marathon in 2019 for the Sailors Society charity, you might see him out for a training run during the event! He enjoys travelling (not on a cruise), skiing, reading, nice food and wine and is a passionate advocate of the shipping industry.

Steven Young

VP Port & Shore Operations

Carnival UK


Steven Young is Vice President Port & Shore Operations for Carnival UK. In this position he is responsible for port operations, ground services, passenger turnaround and air transfer operations. Responsibilities include Port, Agency and Government relationships worldwide for both the P&O and Cunard brands. Steven is closely involved with Itinerary planning and is a member of the CLIA Europe Ports and Destination Advisory Committee.

Steven’s career spans over 30 years in the Ports and Marine industries having also worked as Harbour Master and Port Manager/Director in a number of international ports, including the Port of Southampton in the UK and Sydney Ports Corporation in Australia.

A Master Mariner, Steven started his career with P&O Princess before moving ashore in the early 1990’s to further a career in port management.

Manus Walsh

President, Brenock Technology


Manus is a software industry veteran and founded Brenock Technology in 1995.  He has worked with most of the major Operators in this industry for some as many as twenty years.  Brenock are the software architects for Ocean Guardian, a state of the art Environmental compliance platform for the Marine Industry.


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