Many years ago, while still a graduate student, I was introduced to the OOAE Division by my PhD advisor, the late Professor Allin Cornell. With support from industrial affiliates who funded Stanford University's Reliability of Marine Structures (RMS) program, I worked first on subjects aligned with OOAE's Structures, Safety and Reliability group and, later, with the Ocean Renewable Energy group. It would not be an exaggeration to say that the OOAE Division and the annual OMAE conferences, which I have attended every year since the 26th OMAE conference held in San Diego in 2007, have played an important part of my professional life. The division and opportunities it offered to engage with many friends have been wonderful in my journey as an academic.
On behalf of the OOAE Division, I welcome everyone engaged in ocean, offshore and arctic engineering activities—from academia, industry, research labs, and government institutions—to join us at this year's conference, the very first time in Australia! Ours is a truly international network of participants and we are delighted to welcome you to Melbourne. This year I have had the great opportunity to serve as OOAE Division Chair working together with many dedicated volunteers. At the end of the conference, I will pass the Chair responsibility to my good friend and current Vice-Chair, Rüdiger U. Franz von Bock und Polach.
I wish to thank my colleagues who have worked hard to arrange an exciting and innovative technical program. The contributions of authors, reviewers, session and topic organizers, symposium and workshop coordinators, and the technical program chair have all been vital. I must acknowledge all of the efforts, advice and ideas of the members of the Executive Committees of OOAE. It is the efforts of all these folks, collectively, that have preserved and even enhanced the vital role we all play in the technical, scientific, educational and economic contributions to ocean, offshore and arctic engineering. I have gained much from being a part of this group.
Finally, I acknowledge the Local Organizing Committee, the ASME staff, and the Sea-to-Sky personnel for their important roles in the organization of this, the 42nd OMAE conference.
I look forward to seeing you in Melbourne in June!
Prof. Lance Manuel
OOAE Division Chair
Professor & Associate Chair of Civil Engineering
The University of Texas at Austin