Big-ship veterans join Windstar in key technical, maritime jobs

John Gunner, left, is VP expansion projects and Capt. Michael B. Ross is director of marine & safety operations John Gunner, left, is VP expansion projects and Capt. Michael B. Ross is director of marine & safety operations

John Gunner joined Windstar Cruises in the newly created role of VP expansion projects, and Capt. Michael Ross as director of marine & safety operations. This comes as the line continues to add destinations and expand its programs, notably, the recently announced $250m 'Star Plus Initiative' ship lengthenings starting in October 2019.

Backgrounds at Princess Cruises, Royal Caribbean, Carnival

Gunner has decades of industry experience, primarily with Princess Cruises, where he served as SVP with responsibility for the safe and efficient operation of the entire fleet. Ross has 35 years of maritime experience and most recently served as director of management systems at Royal Caribbean International.

'John and Mike bring a wealth of cruise experience to the operation of our fleet and a commitment to the highest standards for safe operations, while ensuring we do so with a light environmental footprint,' Windstar president John Delaney said.

John Gunner

Gunner’s education in electrical engineering, with a focus on marine electronics and communication, led him to positions as an electrical engineer before becoming a sea-going officer aboard P&O Princess Cruises, culminating as chief electro technical officer. He came ashore as senior project manager for P&O Princess Cruises’ New Build Group, and for 12 years designed and reviewed development of passenger vessels, including five mega-ships.

A promotion to SVP technical operations gave him oversight for all aspects of technical and engineering operations for more than a decade. Since 2016, Gunner has served as a technical consultant for Windstar Cruises, reviewing aspects of technical and engineering operations, assessing operations and overseeing major vessel projects.

Michael Ross

Ross brings deep and diverse experience spanning a career that encompasses positions on government vessels, Maersk Line and Koch Shipping, before his positions at Royal Caribbean and Carnival Cruise Line. He holds an unlimited master's license and is a seasoned professional in all facets of global operations, fleet and vessel management. Ross places a heavy emphasis on environmental compliance, safety awareness and emergency preparedness; twice he received commendations for sea rescues.

At Windstar he is responsible for developing and implementing policies to ensure the fleet operates safely and with a minimum environmental impact. He holds a bachelor’s degree in nautical science from the Maine Maritime Academy.

Windstar has more than 140 team members based in its Seattle office and employs 1,500 seagoing staff and crew worldwide.

Posted 03 December 2018

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Anne Kalosh

Editor, Seatrade Cruise News & Senior Associate Editor Seatrade Cruise Review