Dr Björn Kjerfve, Professor of Oceanography and Geography and Dean of the College of Geosciences at Texas A & M University, has been appointed as the new head of the World Maritime University. He will take up his new post in May.
Dr Kjerfve, who has dual United States and Swedish nationality, has recently overseen the $115 million renovation of a scientific drilling ship, JOIDES Resolution, which forms part of the multinational Integrated Ocean Drilling Program currently being implemented by Texas A&M University.
Welcoming his appointment, Efthimios Mitropoulos, the IMO Secretary-General, who is also Chancellor of the WMU, said: “I am pleased to welcome Dr Kjerfve on board and look forward to working with him as the University embarks on the next chapter of its history. Dr Kjerfve’s long experience and expertise in ocean sciences and the delivery of high-quality tertiary education and research will add considerable value to the reputation that WMU has acquired as a globally-recognized centre of excellence in the maritime field.”
The appointment of Dr Kjerfve follows a thorough advertising and short-listing process and a final selection by an eminent panel chaired by WMU Chancellor Emeritu and past IMO Secretary General William O’Neil. Dr Kjerfve replaces Dr Karl Laubstein, who retired from the University as President Emeritus, on 31 July 2008, following the celebration of the University’s Silver Jubilee.