ABS Strengthens Digital and Strategic Leadership

Never before in recorded history has so much change and disruption in the shipping industry been occurring at such an accelerated pace. The advancements in digitalization, automation, and more are prompting risks as well as rewards, requiring intentional expertise. This intentionality will help mitigate risks and will help protect the marine environment from accidents and damage.
— Carleen Lyden Walker, Co-Founder & Executive Director, NAMEPA

Key appointments in organization’s digital class strategy build solid foundation for the future of classification

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(Houston) ABS, a leading provider of classification and technical services to the marine and offshore industries, announced three key senior management appointments as part of the organization’s digital class strategy.

“As our markets are increasingly shaped by digital technology, ABS is setting the pace in digital innovation,” said ABS Chairman, President and CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki. “As part of our digital class journey, our entire organization is focused on digital developments and opportunities. By strengthening our digital and strategic leadership, ABS remains very well-positioned for growth in the data- and digital-driven marketplace of today and tomorrow.”

Howard Fireman, previously the organization’s chief technology officer, will take on the role of ABS Chief Digital Officer (CDO) leading a global team of experts across the organization in the fields of data analytics, innovative inspection technologies, mobile technologies and cybersecurity as well as continuing to drive the development of  industry-leading software, including ABS Nautical Systems products and solutions. Fireman holds a BSE and MSE in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from the University of Michigan as well as a master’s degree in Technical Management from Johns Hopkins University.

Joseph (Joe) Gollapalli joins ABS as Vice President, Digital Technology. Previously, Gollapalli was the Chief Information Officer and Digital Transformation Leader for the drilling division of GE Oil & Gas. He brings to ABS more than 20 years of leadership experience to leverage software, data and analytics to develop and deploy innovative digital services that disrupt traditional business models. Gollapalli now leads a global team dedicated to building digital solutions to transform marine and offshore inspection processes in order to increase asset uptime while reducing costs. Gollapalli holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, Accounting and Information Systems from Georgetown College, as well as a Master of Business Administration from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

“Combining Howard’s industry-recognized experience in shipboard systems and operations technology and Joe’s digital technology leadership allows us to command a significant transformation for maritime classification globally,” said Wiernicki.

Additionally, joining ABS as Vice President, Strategic Development is Ryan Moody. Reporting to the Chairman, President and CEO, Moody is working closely with the executive leadership team regarding strategic activities in support of the organization’s business goals and objectives. He brings nearly 20 years of engineering management and strategic leadership in the oil and gas industry and most recently served as the senior strategist for industrial cyber security at Siemens. Moody holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Houston.

“Ryan is a great addition to ABS and infuses substantial leadership into our high quality senior management team,” added Wiernicki.