Meet our mentors
Nick founded Thetius in 2019 to serve as a source of intelligence, analysis, and research on emerging technologies within the supply chain, and help industry leaders to understand and prepare for the future. Nick started his career as a deck officer on tankers, ferries, and offshore renewables before moving into maritime technology. He has since held commercial positions overseeing the launch of digital products and services in a number of organisations, including port call optimisation startup Intelligent Cargo Systems, and UK seafarer education charity Marine Society. Nick is an accomplished ultra-endurance athlete, having completed a 300-mile solo trek across the Arabian Peninsula and six back to back marathons in the Sahara Desert.
Hailing from the Wirral Penninsula, Sam’s interest in the sea was first sparked onboard a Mersey Ferry and visits to the Merseyside Maritime Museum as a child. Later in life, Sam was appointed Midshipman RNR as part of the Liverpool University Royal Naval Unit where his interest in the sea was rekindled during sea training onboard the unit’s affiliated training vessel HMS CHARGER. On completion of his Ba(Hons) in History at the University of Liverpool, Sam joined the Royal Navy as a Warfare Officer attending BRNC DARTMOUTH before making the decision to leave the RN and pursue a civilian seafaring career in 2011. Soon after, he attended Fleetwood Nautical College as a Deck Cadet, gaining OOW (Unlimited) certification and graduating with a Foundation Degree in Nautical Science in late 2014. Sam has worked for one of the UK’s leading RoRo Ferry Operators since his Cadetship and currently sails as Chief Officer.Holding a Chief Mate (Unlimited) CoC, Sam hopes to gain his Master (Unlimited) CoC in Summer 2020. With an extensive background in the RoRo sector Sam’s main professional interest is in Pilotage, Ship-Handling and Bridge Team Management. He currently holds a Pilotage Exemption Certificate for the Port of Dublin and is gaining experience and training towards certification in Liverpool. In his spare time his interests generally involve him spending even more time either on, beside or immersed in water, his principal interests including Scuba Diving, Sailing, Skiing, Fishing, Tennis and playing the Tuba with local orchestras.
Paul went to sea on a Cadetship with Carnival UK and, once qualified, found his dream job onboard a research vessel. He stayed there until had his Masters, when he tried out yachts and then came ashore to spend more time with his now-wife (and less time waking up at 0330). He has also spent time working on Ro-Ro ferries and tall ships. Whilst on a sabbatical, he started offering MCA orals tutoring on the side. This, combined with other fortuitous events, led to the creation of Whitehorse Maritime, which now offers operational and training consultancy to ports and vessel operators of various types, as well as MCA orals prep to both companies and individuals.
Captain Simon C Jones AFNI, AFRIN,AVI, Born 1983, Mentor and Liveryman of the Honourable Company of Master Mariners, Accredited Vessel Inspector and Associate Fellow of the Nautical Institute and Royal Institute of Navigation. Employment: Over 20 years at sea from deck cadet to 2nd officer with Gearbulk and offshore vessels, Chief Officer with Northlink Ferries and Master at Prysmian Group. Areas of specialist knowledge: oil and gas industry, marine assurance & consulting, marine warranty, cable laying, Ro-ro passenger ferries, auditing, ISM lead Auditor and mentoring. I have recently left the sea to start work ashore as a Principal Marine Consultant offering Clients a varied range of services under the Maritime Assurance & Consulting bracket.
Steve trained at sea as navigating officer and ashore with Cunard Cargo Shipping for 10 years, before joining the founding management team that for 20 years, successfully ran O.T. Africa Line, a specialist Africa liner shipping, logistics, and terminal operations company. As the company grew from 12 to 1,200 employees in Europe, Africa and on ships, Steve was involved in recruiting, mentoring and developing staff at all levels. In 2001 he founded CMR, a specialist consultancy focused on the Maritime, Ports, Supply chains and African markets. With his portfolio of 150 marine experts, he provides; business development, risk, and investigation consultancy, and experts for dispute resolution. Also previously recruiting executives for shore-based roles, Steve has been involved in mentoring them through their career change.
My main speciality that I bring to coming ashore is to help seafarers make decisions on what to do. I so often hear people say: "I really want to come ashore but I have no idea what to do." This is what I help with. I use my training as a career coach/consultant but also my own experience of how not to come ashore! In 2013 I made the move ashore (for the first time!) - my final full time post at sea was as Chief Officer on board a 90 metre exploration yacht. With a crew of 29 and some very large tenders on board this was a great experience that took me round the world, literally. The bit I have enjoyed most about being at sea has always been the people side. Training, teaching, coaching and mentoring have always been a massive part of how I operated on board so it was the obvious transition when I came ashore to use these skills to help others. At present I work full time for HM Coastguard in Northern Ireland and on the side I help seafarers transition to a successful career on shore.
Steven spent a decade working as a navigation officer in the merchant navy, primarily on cable ships. He has a Chief Officer Certificate and BSc (Hons) in Maritime Studies. After leaving the sea he subsequently worked across the maritime industry, within marine fraud investigations, ship management, marine insurance as well as professional bodies and trade associations. With Masters’ Degrees in Marketing, Communications and Public Relations, and also International Relations, Steven has worked with a number of maritime organisations to assist them in bridging the gap between the ship and shore, and their efforts to engage with seafarers and the shipping industry. He has qualified as a chartered shipbroker, marine surveyor and ISM/ISO Auditor. He is Past President of the Propeller Club Liverpool, a Member of the Nautical Institute, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and Proprietor of The Athenaeum. He founded the Seafarers Happiness Index assisting the Mission to Seafarers to address the concerns of crew, and currently works with the UK Department of International Trade to ensure maritime services companies can take advantage of new business opportunities globally.
Jeffrey Blum has been involved in shipping and trading since 1972. He is the fourth generation of a shipping and freight forwarding family, a member of the Baltic Exchange since 1976 and worked with a Lloyd's underwriter, a Lloyd’s broker and as a shipbroker, owner, operator, gasoil futures broker, charterer and commodities trader in London and abroad. A Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers (ICS) by examination since 1979, he has served on various International Committees and the Committee of the London and South East Branch since 1983, including its Chairman (2005-2007) and Education Officer (2000 to date). A Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators since 1997, he has been an arbitrator since 1994 with LMAA, SCMA and ICSAS and an expert witness since 1983. Since 1984 he has been lecturing globally on several subjects of Maritime Studies and Law at universities and colleges (including his own since 2002) including as a Visiting Professor at World and Shanghai Maritime Universities and frequently at bespoke, academic and public conferences and masterclass workshops. A maritime and commodities commercial claims consultant for varied global clients and governments, he is considered a specialist in commercial operations, shipping contracts and claims management.