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Maine Maritime Academy President Jerry Paul Steps Down

May 28, 2024

Jerry Paul (Photo: Maine Maritime Academy)

Jerry Paul (Photo: Maine Maritime Academy)

Maine Maritime Academy (MMA) President Jerry Paul announced his intent to retire this summer due to extenuating family circumstances, the public maritime training college announced.

An engineer, attorney and former government official, Paul (class of ’89) has served as president of the Castine, Maine academy since April 2022.

Following a special meeting on May 22 to finalize a transition plan for presidential leadership at the academy, the MMA Board of Trustees Chairman Wayne Norton announced that the Board had unanimously supported the appointment of Craig Johnson (class of ’91) as Interim President of Maine Maritime Academy effective June 2, 2024.

Johnson has served as the Chief Operating Officer of Maine Maritime Academy since August 2022. In this capacity, he has been integral in all Academy operations from the oversight of our multi-million-dollar construction initiatives to initiating and growing our strategic partnerships to produce additional relationships in the maritime industry and revenue streams. During his tenure, he has served as the temporary overseer of our financial, operational, and facilities operations, as well as Advancement and Alumni affairs.

In a message to the MMA community, Norton said, “Through many of Paul’s initiatives, hard work, and vision, he has been a catalyst for a new trajectory at the Academy. President Paul leaves behind a strong foundation poised for continued growth born of the hard work of our faculty, staff, and Academy leadership team.

“Under his watch, MMA has reinstated MMA Football, established the MMA Foundation, reached new records for state and federal funding, prepared for the arrival of a new training ship and pier renovations to accompany it. New strategies in Advancement, Enrollment and communications have reaped solid results, and MMA’s profile throughout the state and abroad is strengthening.  The Academy’s profile on the water through the return of the schooner Bowdoin to the Arctic after 16 years and the return of a nationally competitive sailing team are commendable. While I cannot list the full breadth and depth of his accomplishments, I assure you, they are felt in programs across the campus.”

Paul wrote in his letter to the Board, “Even more importantly [than our successes], I am pleased to have assembled a strong and capable Administration Vice Presidential team that is performing at high levels of management and leadership. Together we have plotted a path forward that will be measured on delivering the best possible experience and outcomes for our students so that they may continue to lead in our industry for generations to come. This team of professionals has a shared vision for our Academy and its future.”

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