December 3, 2018

Dear Fellow Diplomates,

As the Academy of Coastal, Ocean, Port & Navigation Engineers celebrates its 10th anniversary, I am honored and excited to assume the presidency of this eminent and dedicated group of industry figures. All of us on the Board of Trustees eagerly look forward to working with you to guide the continued growth and success of our noble profession and help lead ACOPNE to new heights of excellence.

I join with the ACOPNE staff and the entire past and present ACOPNE Board of Trustees to extend our sincere gratitude to our outgoing President, Andrew H. Cairns, for his dynamic leadership in putting ACOPNE on a sound financial footing and advancing it to an unprecedented level of success. He is truly a hard act to follow. We are also grateful to outgoing Past President Ed Schmeltz and outgoing Trustees Laurence Emsley and Paul Work for their indelible contributions to helping our Academy realize its goals. Thanks to these leaders, and to all of you, the state of ACOPNE has never been stronger.

We launched our first public nominations for the ACOPNE Board of Trustees, and extend our heartfelt congratulations to James N. Marino on his new role as President-Elect and a warm welcome to our two new trustees, Lynn Bocamazo and Jack Cox. We also congratulate Christian De Meyer on being appointed as ACOPNE Treasurer and Imee Osantowski on assuming the presidency of COPRI.

Thanks to your exemplary efforts, we have continued to make great strides in forwarding our program and our growth, partnering with COPRI and other COPNE-related organizations, and working toward our common goals: to improve the practice, elevate the standards, and advance the profession of coastal, ocean, port and navigation engineering. All of you will be tremendous assets as we work to broaden our impact both in the U.S. and abroad.

Over the past year, ACOPNE Board members, committees and staff have worked to increase the visibility of Board Certification for our ACOPNE Diplomates through our various activities and participation at major engineering conferences. For 2019, among our top priorities will be continuing to communicate the importance of board certification to employers of professional engineering and agencies responsible for the design, construction and management of coastal, port, ocean and navigation infrastructure. Board certification is the highest level of advanced post-licensure certification in the engineering profession for professional engineers (P.E.). Much more than a distinguished professional achievement, it brings with it a strong sense of responsibility to the community we live and work in, a commitment to optimizing the engineering solutions we develop and maximizing the benefits our work provides, and a sense of belonging and contributing to our noble profession. It takes a concerted investment and serious commitment to reach this milestone. Achieving ACOPNE Diplomate board certification is well worth the challenge.

We launched two new ACOPNE awards for recognizing Diplomates who are enriching our profession: Outstanding Practitioner in Coastal, Ocean, Port & Navigation Engineering and Service to the Academy. We will continue to build more diversity on our Board and make great strides in better articulating the value of being a Diplomate; forwarding our program and our growth; and partnering with ASCE, COPRI and other related professional organizations. We are also committed to working more collaboratively toward our common goals of improving the practice, elevating the standards, and advancing the profession of coastal, ocean, port and navigation engineering. These efforts will give us the power to transform and shape the future of our industry, create a better tomorrow and make great things happen today for our Diplomates. All of you will be tremendous assets as we work to broaden our impact both in the U.S. and abroad.

You can support our Academy and its mission in several powerful ways:

  1. Include your Board Certification credential after your name in all business correspondence, emails, and business cards.
  2. Recruit and encourage colleagues and friends to apply for ACOPNE Board Certification.
  3. Join us in September at Ports 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, as we host our special ACOPNE 10th Anniversary Diplomate Induction Ceremony.
  4. Stay certified! ACOPNE Board Certification is the highest level of advanced post-licensure certification in the engineering field. Information on the annual certification renewal process is available at
  5. Share your news and achievements with fellow Diplomates and the coastal, ocean, port and navigation engineering community by making sure they are included in ACOPNE News. Email [email protected].
  6. Be involved! If you would like to take a more active part in ACOPNE and our review committees, there are several ways to support the advancement of your profession. Please email [email protected]

Thank you for your indefatigable commitment to strengthening and upholding the high standards of our great profession, and for your exemplary support of ACOPNE. You embody our profession at its best.

One of life’s greatest privileges is to serve others. As Nobel Prize winning writer Rabindranath Tagore noted, “I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.” What you do matters. You are making a tangible difference in our world and touching the lives of people everywhere through the work you do. You are invaluable, and immensely inspiring.

Together, we are building a remarkable force for the greater good that will shape the future for decades to come. And we’ve only just begun! I look forward with keen anticipation to what we will achieve together, inspired by one another.

On behalf of the Board of Trustees, the working committees, and the staff of ACOPNE, thank you for your passionate commitment, your generous support, and all that you do for our profession. We wish you and all your loved ones a joyous holiday season.

With profound gratitude and warmest wishes,


Paul F. Boulos, Ph.D., BCEEM, Hon.D.WRE, Dist.D.NE, Dist.M.ASCE, NAE
Academy of Coastal, Ocean, Port & Navigation Engineers