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Friday, November 7
Grandma’s Sports Garden
12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Mark Gill, Director of Vessel Traffic Services ("Ice Ops") for the US Coast Guard at the Soo

TOPIC - "2014-The Great Lakes Epic Ice Season"  

Mr. Mark Gill assumed the duties as Director, Vessel Traffic Service St Marys River (aka Soo Traffic) in September of 2007.  He previously worked for Soo Traffic as a vessel traffic management specialist (2002 to 2005) and the VTS Supervisor (2005 to 2007).  Under Mr. Gill’s direction Soo Traffic manages Operation Taconite, the nation’s largest domestic ice breaking operation.


Mr. Gill began his career with the U.S. Coast Guard graduating from basic training at Cape May, New Jersey in April 1982.  He worked as a sonar electronics technician from 1983 to 1992, achieving the rank of Chief Petty Officer in 1989.  After graduating from University of Seattle, Washington in 1991, Mr. Gill attended Officer Candidate Training in Yorktown, Virginia and became a commissioned officer in July of 1992.  Mr. Gill retired from active military service in August 2002.  He was hired by the U.S. Coast Guard as a civil service employee in December 2002.


Mr. Gill’s shipboard assignments included enlisted tours of duty aboard USCGC GALLATIN (WHEC 721) and USCGC HAMILTON (WHEC 715).  He was the navigator and operations officer aboard USCGC MADRONA (WLB-302) and the Executive Officer of USCGC BRISTOL BAY (WLB-102) w/ Barge CG 12001.  His staff tours of duty included liaison assignments to U.S. Navy Fleet Training Groups Charleston, South Carolina, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and San Diego, California.  He was the finance manager for the Western Rivers aids to navigation program out of St. Louis, Missouri and served as operations officer of Group Charleston, South Carolina and Vessel Traffic Service Houston-Galveston, Texas. 


Mr. Gill and his wife Christina (Schultz) have a daughter, a son, and four grandsons.  They make their home in Brimley, Michigan.

Saturday, November 8
Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center
12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Dr. James P. Delgado, Director of Maritime Heritage in the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries
for the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration 

Dr. Delgado has led or participated in shipwreck expeditions around the world. His undersea explorations include RMSTitanic, the discoveries of Carpathia, the ship that rescued Titanic's survivors, and the notorious "ghost ship" Mary Celeste, as well as surveys of USS Arizonaat Pearl Harbor, the sunken fleet of atomic-bombed warships at Bikini Atoll, the polar exploration shipMaud, wrecked in the Arctic, the 1846 wreck of the United States naval brig Somers, whose tragic story inspired Herman Melville's Billy Budd, and Sub Marine Explorer, a civil war-era find and the world's oldest known deep-diving submarine. His archaeological work has also included the excavation of ships and collapsed buildings along the now-buried waterfront of Gold Rush San Francisco 



Recent projects in the oceans and lakes have benefited from deep submergence technology - robots exploring hundreds if not thousands of feet deep, linked not only to human pilots but via satellites and the Internet to global audiences.  Thanks to these innovations, humanity now can truly begin to access, learn from and work to protect that which is important in the deep.  This is the advent of a new age of exploration, where, to paraphrase some famous words, humans can now boldly go, where no one has gone before, in search of new life, and past civilizations.  James Delgado has participated in some of the latest of these expeditions, from a detailed three-dimensional mapping of the Titanic wreck site to the online and interactive survey and excavation of early 19th century ships at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico.  On the latest expedition, over 700,000 people watched over their computer screens, from around the world, to not only observe but to participate in this new and exciting approach to archaeology, marine biology, oceanography and exploration.  Dr. Delgado will share the lessons and the observations of these missions, and speak to what the future holds.


Caption:  A high-resolution camera deployed from the Hercules Remotely Operated Vehicle explores a 19th century wreck in 4300 feet of water in the Gulf of Mexico in 2013.

Photo credit:  Ocean Exploration Trust/Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, Texas State University.



Saturday, November 8

Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center


Dennis Hale - Author and Sole Survivor of the SS Daniel J. Morrell 

Ken Merryman and Jerry Eliason – The Scotiadoc Shipwreck – found September 2013 

Frederick Stonehouse – Author and Historian 

LCDR Anthony J. Mafia - Commanding Officer, USCG Cutter Alder

Chris Winters - Author and Photographer

Ron Williams - National Weather Service

Dan Fountain - Author, Michigan Gold & Silver, Mining in the Upper Peninsula

Dr. Doug Ricketts - Senior Research Associate and Director of Marine Operations, R/V Blue Heron Large Lakes Observatory

Tamara Thomsen - Maritime Archaeologist, Wisconsin Historical Society

Lee Radzak - Historic Site Manager Split Rock Lighthouse

Gales of November is an annual fundraiser to support the Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center.  















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