Nicholas J. Lewis Marine Operations Expert

Nicholas J. Lewis, Marine Operations Expert

Captain Lewis has more than 35 years in the Marine industry, both at sea and ashore. He is a licensed U.S. Coast Guard Master of Steam and Motor vessels of not more than 1600 gross tons upon oceans and a 3rd Mate of Steam and Motor vessels of any gross tons upon oceans. He has been a Captain for more than 25 years on Tug and Barge ocean-going units. He has also worked as a 3rd Mate aboard Ocean going tankers.

As the Captain of the vessel he was responsible for the overall operation of the vessel including the safe navigation of the vessel, compliance with all company and regulatory body requirements, and compliance with all safety policies and procedures; including vessel security and ensuring that all vessel maintenance schedules were up to date. He was responsible for all aspects of the operation: budget planning, purchasing of stores, spare parts, safety equipment, electronics, fuel, as well as crews payroll and overtime.

As a Captain and Mate aboard Ocean Tankers and Tanker Barges he was responsible for developing critical vessel onboard procedures and protocols to comply with company policies. This included writing procedures for oil and cargo transfers as well as an operation manual for all tasks done aboard the vessel. He was also responsible for all vessel inspections, audits, onboard injury investigations and analysis.

Captain Lewis is a graduate of the State University of NY, Maritime College at Fort Schuler, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Transportation.

Professional Experience

Robson Forensic, Inc.


2009 to present

Provide technical investigations, analysis, reports, and testimony towards the resolution of commercial and personal injury litigation involving marine matters and failure analysis.

Seariver Maritime, Inc. and Seariver Maritime Vessels

1981 to 2006
S/R AMERICAN PROGRESS – Tanker 2004-2006

Bridge Watch stander and managed all aspects of the vessels navigation. Directed vessel mooring operations and was in charge of loading and discharging all cargoes and ballast while on duty. Was also the Safety Officer aboard in charge of inspecting all safety equipment and the coordinator for all monthly safety meetings. Ports of Call included: Alaska, California, Washington, Singapore, Japan, Panama Canal Zone and numerous Ports along the Gulf and Atlantic Coasts.

S/R EVERETT/ Barge S/R NEW YORK 2001-2004
ATB (Articulating Tug and Barge)
Lead Captain in converting the unit from Mobil Oil to Exxon / Seariver Maritime ownership and operations. Developed critical vessel onboard procedures and protocols to conform to Seariver’s company policies. This included writing procedures for all oil and cargo transfers as well as an operation manual for all tasks aboard the vessel.

Ensured that all Solas, USCG, IMO, ISO/ISM, and OIMS (Operation Integrity Management System - Exxon’s Company Policy) were complied with at all times. Also ensured that all vessel Documents and Certificates were in compliance and up to date. Conducted and/or assisted the USCG, American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) and Company representatives in all vessel Inspections and Audits.

Worked with the Chief Engineer, Chief Mate and all crew members on a daily basis to set up proper maintenance schedules, review safety policies and procedures, and ensure the vessel was operated in a safe and seaworthy manner.

Ensured all the proper drills and inspections were carried out and conducted on a weekly, quarterly, or yearly basis, as required.

Oversaw the safe navigation of the vessel. Ensured that all Voyage plans, Publications, Charts and Corrections were up to date and that all electronic navigational equipment and communications gear was in good working order (including Radars, ARPA, GPS, AIS, GMDSS and VHFs).

Worked with all officers and crew in budget planning, preparation and stewardship. This included all requisition stores, spare parts, fuel, food (no cook aboard), port expenses, main office costs, payroll and overtime.

Assimilated several Ocean Fleet (Tankers) and Mississippi River Fleet (Tugs/Barges) employees into a very successful crew aboard the ATB. During my watch there were no injuries, spills, damages or commercial non-conformities.

Ocean and Harbor Tugs
Captained all 3 Tugs in San Francisco. Duties included tanker escort from /to sea/port, docking/undocking vessels within the Bay Area (Redwood City south to Sacramento north). Also Towed a bulk barge from San Francisco to Anchorage, Alaska, reloaded barge in Nikiski, AK. And discharged barge in Portland, Oregon

FLEET SUPERVISOR (Port Captain) 1992
Complete operational responsibility for the Coastal Fleet including:

  • The daily operations of all the Harbor Tugs and Coastal Tugs/ Barges operating in New York Harbor, along the Atlantic Coast (From Maine to Virginia), Gulf of Mexico and San Francisco Bay.
  • Supervised Exxon’s Tanker Docking Master and all 3rd party Pilots and Tugs in New York Harbor.
  • The Emergency Response on scene Supervisor.
  • Organizing and supervising the Fleet Seminars on Occupational Health and Safety.
  • Supervising all vessel/terminal screening (marine vetting) for the Exxon domestic and foreign flag trade.
  • Personnel Administration and Supervision of division employees in the Division.
  • Initiating new policies and procedures to assist all Captains in stewarding vessel budgets, operations and crews.

EXXON MAINE / barge EXXON BAYWAY 1987-1992
Chief Mate and Captain (1988) aboard the Exxon Maine/ barge Exxon Bayway. Captain (1989-1992) the Exxon Golden State / Exxon Barge # 503. Operated in the Gulf of Mexico MGO trade. Responsible for the overall safe operation of the Tug/Barge unit, including all cargo transfers.

Lead Captain in the tug/barge unit vessel transfer from Poling Bros Inc. in New York Harbor to Exxon Shipping Company – East Coast Branch. Responsible for developing all new procedures aboard to conform to Exxon policies and supervising the re-rigging of the unit to operate more efficiently and safely

Chief Mate and Relief Captain aboard all the above Exxon East Coast Tugs operating in New York Harbor and along the Atlantic Coast from Maine to Virginia. Operations consisted of docking/undocking Ships, Shifting lightering barges from anchorage to docks, and delivering barges to ports along the East Coast carrying clean oil products.

Interstate Towing Co. (SONAT), Philadelphia, Pa.

Chief Mate

1980 to 1981

Chief Mate aboard the Tug Clipper towing the Barges Ocean 155 or Ocean 250 from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to New York Harbor and Boston, Massachusetts.

Sun Transport, Inc. (Sunoco), Marcus Hook, Pa.

1974 to 1980
Captain 1977-1980

Became the youngest Chief Mate in Sun’s history to be promoted to Captain aboard the Tug New England Sun / Barge Albany Sun. Transported clean oil products from New York Harbor to ports along the East Coast from Maine to Puerto Rico.

Chief Mate 1975-1977
Chief Mate aboard the Tugs New England Sun, Newark Sun, Chesapeake Sun and the Motor Barge Toledo Sun transporting clean oil products from Newark, New Jersey to ports along Atlantic Coast and north to Bangor, Maine, including the Hudson River to Albany, New York.

Third Mate 1974-1975
Third Mate aboard the Coastal Tankers Texas Sun and New Jersey Sun, operating from Marcus Hook, Pennsylvania to Texas and Puerto Rico.

F.W. Hartmann and Co.

Boarding Agent

1973 to 1973 to

Boarding Agent for Atlantica Lines, Hansa Lines, and Black Star Lines. Overall agent for all their vessels when they arrived in New York Harbor. Responsibilities included all manifests, bill of ladings, entering and clearing the vessels with the U.S. Customs service. Also worked with the Department of Agriculture and Immigration to ensure vessel were in compliance with all rules and regulations.

Professional Credential

  • Master of United States Steam or Motor vessels of not more than 1600 Gross Tons upon Oceans. (Issue # 9)
  • Third Mate Steam and Motor Vessels of any Gross Tons upon Oceans First Class Pilot of any Gross Tons upon the Waters of New York Harbor from Bayway, New Jersey to Eastern Long Island Sound, including the Hudson River
  • Radar Observer (Unlimited), U.S.C.G. Approved
  • GMDSS Radio Operator License
  • Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW)
  • Escort Tug Master – State of California


B.S. Marine Transportation, State University of New York Maritime College, Fort Schuyler, The Bronx, New York, 1973

Additional Training, Courses, and Seminars

  • GMDSS Operator Training program
  • Personal Survival Techniques Course
  • Personal Safety and Social Responsibility Course
  • Basic First Aid / CPR Course
  • Basic and Advanced Marine Firefighting Course
  • ARPA / Bridge Resource Management Course
  • Confined Space Awareness Course
  • Electronic Chart Display and Information System (ECDIS) training program
  • Dangerous Liquids Cargo Course
  • Advanced Shiphandling for Masters
  • Shiphandling with Tractor Tugs
  • Tractor Tug Boathandling
  • Tug Emergency Preparedness Training Course
  • Breathe Alcohol Testing Course
  • Specimen Collection Course

Professional Memberships

  • Board Member and past President of the First Lieutenant Michael L. Lewis Jr. Memorial Fund, which provides scholarships to deserving, upstanding, American citizens attending College, 1970-2016
  • President of the Men’s Auxiliary, VFW Post 8191, 2007-2013
    • Oversee the membership and assist the Post Commander in carrying out the mission of the Post and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.
  • Member of VFW Post 4643, 2013 to 2017

v. 11/26/19