|John Catsimatidis||Brian P. Devine, Chairman ~ Norton Rose Fulbright|
|Angeliki Frangou||Markos Drakotos, President ~ M&N Management Corp.|
|Peter C. Georgiopoulos||Athas Ioannou, Exec. Vice President ~ Constantine Designers & Builders|
|William Rudin||George Zapantis, Vice President ~ Law Office of George N. Zapantis|
|Hara Gisholt, Treasurer ~ LISCR, LLC.|
|Nick Katsanos, Secretary ~ Seward & Kissel|
|John C. Stratakis, Legal Advisor ~ Poles, Tublin, Stratakis & Gonzalez, LLP|
Board of Directors
|Humera Ahmed ~ Blank Rome||Chris Koutsis ~ Investors Bank|
|Solomon Asser ~ Tecny Group Inc.||Nicholas Koutsomitis ~ Koutsomitis Architects PC|
|Peter T. Bazos ~ Southern Star Shipping Co.||Kalli Livanos ~ Kyla Shipping|
|Niovi Christopoulou||Clay Maitland ~ International Registries, Inc.|
|Antony Contomichalos ~ MacArthur Capital, Inc.||Konstantine Ouranitsas ~ YP Director|
|George T. Constantin ~ Heritage Investment Management LLC||Nancy Papaioannou ~ Atlantic Bank, Division of NYCB|
|Demetrios Diakolios||Ted Petrone ~ Navios Corporation|
|Kleon Diamantopoulos ~ Jacq. Pierot Jr. & Sons, Inc.||George Pierot ~ Jacq. Pierot Jr. & Sons, Inc.|
|Angela Giannopoulos ~ Studio 3||Michael Psyllos ~ Alma Bank|
|Marina Hadjipateras ~ Dorian LPG||Alexia Sheinman|
|Christopher Ioannides ~ Clima Industries||Dean Steele|
|Manny Kazanas ~ Cosmopolitan Construction|
Clay Maitland has worked in the shipping industry since graduation from law school in 1968. Clay has been employed by International Registries, Inc. for 37 years and is now a managing partner and an owner of the company, which administers the Marshall Islands Ship Registry – the third largest registry in the world, and which is now one of the best-known yacht registries. He is President of the Trust Company of the Marshall Islands (TCMI), the statutory Maritime Administrator of the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Prior to the year 2000, Clay held similar positions with regard to the maritime administration of the Republic of Liberia.
Clay was born in London, England on December 28, 1942. His father was a pilot in Bomber Command of the Royal Air Force, and was lost with his plane, a B25 Mitchell bomber in March of 1943. Clay’s mother was a native New Yorker, and he came with her to the United States in 1946, aboard RMS Queen Elizabeth.
Clay was educated at schools in Connecticut and received his B.A. degree from Columbia University in 1964, and his law degree from New York Law School in 1968. He was admitted to the New York Bar in 1969 and became associated with the admiralty law firm of Burlingham Underwood & Lord, where he worked until 1974. After a brief stint as admiralty counsel at Union Carbide Corporation, he joined what is now International Registries, Inc. in 1976.
At that time, IR managed the Liberian ship registry, which was, at the time, the largest in the world by tonnage in number of ships. Founded by former Secretary of State Edward Stettinius, who had been president of U.S. Steel, and during World War II, War Shipping Administrator and then Lend-Lease Administrator, the company included among its early investors, Allen Dulles, Esq., who was then a partner in Sullivan & Cromwell. Mr. Dulles went on to become Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. This company, under the name of Liberian Services Inc. included a bank in Liberia, of which Clay Maitland also became an officer after he joined the company in 1976. The genesis of the Stettinius family investments in Liberia arose when President Roosevelt flew from Casablanca with Mr. Stettinius and other members of his staff, to Monrovia, Liberia in January, 1943, to observe the opening of what was to be a major air base, now Roberts Field.
Since his early years as a Maritime lawyer, starting in 1969, Clay has been involved with a number of philanthropic and professional associations connected with the industry. In addition to those listed above, Clay is on the boards of the Maritime Industry Museum, at Fort Schuyler (SUNY Maritime College) and the King’s Point Maritime Museum, at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy. He is on the board of directors of the Sea Research Foundation, created by Dr. Robert Ballard, the discoverer of the wreck of RMS Titanic, and which operates among other things the research vessel Nautilus.
Among his other affiliations: Member of the Executive Committee and Director of the Coast Guard Foundation; member of the Board of Directors of the Coast Guard Auxiliary Foundation; Member of the American Bureau of Shipping, and of the National Cargo Bureau; Founding Chairman of the North American Maritime Environment Protection Association (NAMEPA); Chairman Emeritus of the National Maritime Historical Society (publishers of SEA HISTORY magazine); Chairman of the North American Maritime Ministry Association (NAMMA) Industry Advisory Council; board member of the Maritime Industries Academy Foundation (Baltimore Harbor School); New York City Bar Association and Maritime Law Association of the United States; former Chairman of the National Maritime Historical Society; former Chair of the Admiralty Committee of the New York City Bar Association, and of the Committee on Intergovernmental Organizations of the Maritime Law Association of the United States (MLA). Clay continues to serve as a delegate to the Legal Committee of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in London. Clay is currently on the Executive Board of the World Maritime University in Malmo, Sweden and is a member of the Standing Committee of the Marine Society of the City of New York. He was recently elected Chairman of the Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce.
He has been a delegate to a number of international maritime conferences, including the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea, and at the International Maritime Organization in London.
Clay received the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters from the State University of New York Maritime College in 2006, and was decorated with the U.S. Coast Guard’s Distinguished Public Service Award in 2010, by the present Commandant, ADM Robert J. Papp.
Nancy Papaioannou has worked in the banking industry since 1978 with National Bank of Greece (NBG), in Athens Greece until 1990, when she was transferred to USA, at NBG’s affiliate Atlantic Bank of New York where she remains until today. Since February of 2001, she is the Director and Senior Vice President of the Private Banking and Correspondent Banking Services of Atlantic Bank, today also known as NY Commercial Bank, a division of NYCB family of Banks. Her education includes MBA studies from St. John University, Accounting Degree from Marymount Manhattan College and French Literature from Academie Francaise in Athens Greece.
Costas Kellas is co-founder of Objecutive in 1998, a successful multi-million dollar information technology company with a global client base. Since 2007, the firm has focused on clients with portfolio and asset management needs across the capital markets. Objecutive is well-known for its technical excellence and high-quality products delivering real-time risk analytics to the fund industry and in customizing its technology to provide a competitive advantage to aid managers as they seek peak performance. Previous to Objecutive, Kellas lead and developed several successful tech start-ups in the UK and South Africa. He has his degree in Operations Research and Statistics from Kent University in the UK.
Mr. Kellas is a Director of the Hellenic American Bankers Association (HABA), one of the premier Greek-American organizations in the New York metropolitan area. HABA is a not-for-profit organization established in 1982 to promote the professional and educational interests of Greek-Americans, Cypriots, and Pan-Hellenes in the banking and finance industries.
He is also a Director of the Cyprus US Chamber, which is non-profit membership organization dedicated to promoting trade and investment between Cyprus and the United States and to foster business opportunities and closer ties amongst its own members and the greater business community in the United States.
John C. Stratakis is a partner in the law firm of Poles, Tublin, Stratakis & Gonzalez, LLP, which was established in 1957 to service clients in the maritime and real estate industries.
He also serves as a director of Navios Maritime Holdings Inc., a global shipping and logistics company focused on the transport and transshipment of drybulk commodities including iron ore, coal and grain.
Solomon Asser is Founder and Principal of Tecny Group Inc. in New York City, a firm specializing in Design, Construction and Real Estate Development worldwide.
Mr. Asser was born and raised in Athens, Greece, and served in the Greek Navy. He earned a Diploma in Architecture from École Spéciale d’Architecture in Paris, France and two Master Degrees from Columbia University in New York.
Prior to establishing Tecny Group Inc. in 1990, Mr. Asser worked for Real Estate developers and held several positions with Architectural Firms in the United States and Europe.
His work has been published in Interior Design, Better Homes & Gardens, American Style, Real Estate Weekly, Real Estate Forum, Odyssey Magazine, and other design magazines and trade publications worldwide.
Mr. Asser is fluent in English, French and Greek. Mr. Asser is on the Board of the Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce in New York, Member of the Technical Chamber of Greece, President of the American Friends of the Jewish Museum of Greece and Member of the Advisory Board of the American Sephardic Federation.
Alex Constantopes is a member of Sacco & Fillas LLP and an attorney licensed to practice law in New York and New Jersey as well as various Federal Courts, including the U. S. Supreme Court.
He attended Hofstra University School of Law. Alex Constantopes has been practicing law for 17 years and has focused on Commercial and Residential Real Estate Transactions, Commercial and Consumer Finance Law, Commercial Leasing, Real Estate Law, Land Use and Zoning and Telecommunications Law.
Antony Contomichalos is the founder and President of MacArthur Capital Group, a company established in 1998, now one of the largest owners of retail condominiums in New York City. With a close group of investors, Antony started MacArthur Capital when he identified and acquired several portfolios of under-performing cyclical assets and income producing properties in the greater New York metropolitan area. Since its inception, MacArthur has grown into a private full-fledged long term investment company. Antony is directly responsible for defining and implementing the company’s strategy, identifying investment opportunities, managing its financial assets and overseeing the management of its real estate portfolio. Prior to founding MacArthur, Antony worked for 15 years with Credit Agricole (now Calyon), one of the major international banking groups.
Antony holds a BS in Finance from the American University of Greece and a Master in Applied Economics from the University of Paris IX- Dauphine (France). He is married and has three children.
Kleon Diamantopoulos has been with Jacq Pierot Jr. & Sons, Inc. since 2008 where he is one of 3 directors of the company, heading the Sale and Purchase desk. Before that he worked for Halkidon Shipping Corporation of Greece who own and operate dry cargo and tanker vessels. Kleon holds a BSc in Engineering with Business Studies from Queen Mary University of London and MSc in Finance from Imperial College London, The Business School.
Nicholas Koutsomitis AIA, is an architect and educator with over 30 years experience in a variety of project types. They include Commercial, Institutional, Hospitality, Residential, Industrial, Restoration and Adaptive Reuse of Landmark structures, both in the US and internationally. He is a graduate of the Pratt Institute School of Architecture, where he is also an adjunct associate professor. A registered architect in several states, he is also certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards.
President, Charles Taylor P&I Management (Americas), Inc., the US representative of the Standard P&I Club, a leading marine liability insurer. Formerly a partner at the law firms of Blank Rome and Healy & Baillie. Member of HACC Board, 2001 to date; President, 2009-2011.
Niovi Christopoulou is a corporate attorney currently focused on alternative investments. Ms. Christopoulou was born and raised in Athens, Greece.
Her legal experience includes working at international law firms in New York, London, and Washington DC with a focus on mergers & acquisitions and private equity and as an advisor to multinational companies on legal and strategic issues. She is currently director of capital partnering and Deputy GC at a newly created company engineering first generation financial products.
Ms. Christopoulou graduated with honors from Columbia University Law School (JD 2004, Stone Scholar). In 2018 she graduated from Harvard Business School’s HBX CORe Credential of Readiness in business fundamentals. She is on the board of Association of Corporate Counsel – NY Chapter, has served on the Board of Trustees of Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs and as a committee co-chair of Columbia Business School Alumni Club of NY
Alexia Valentina Sheinman is the Director of Branding and Communications at Pembrooke & Ives, an internationally acclaimed New York-based interior design firm that specializes in high-end residential and luxury development projects in the US and around the world. Alexia is also the founder of her own small interior design practice, Alexia Valentina LLC, and has partnered with Hough Development, a developer of single family homes in Baltimore, on numerous projects.
Alexia was born and raised in New York to a Greek-Cypriot mother and a British father. She has studied in Greece, the United Kingdom and New York, graduating with a BSc in Philosophy and Politics from the University of Bristol and an MFA in Interior Design from Parsons The New School for Design.
Alexia currently lives in downtown Manhattan and is working on a hotel development in Greece.
Director, Maritime & Legal Affairs – New York
Core Assurance CR Marine
Hara Gisholt is a resident of New York City and serves as the Director of Maritime & Legal Affairs of Core Assurance CR Marine. Hara is responsible for identifying new opportunities for the firm, fostering strategic relationships and utilizing her legal skills to the benefit of the company. Prior to joining Core Assurance CR Marine, Hara served as a Vice President at one of the world’s largest ship registries for twelve years where she led the global legal team and created collaborative relationships with worldwide private and public owners as well as ship financiers. During her career, Hara has authored several articles published in publications such as Marine Risk International and Offshore Investment and has presented at various industry conferences.
Hara holds a J.D. from Hofstra University School of Law and was admitted to the U.K. Roll of Solicitors in 2010. She also serves on the Board of the Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce as Treasurer and on the Board of New York Maritime Inc. (NYMAR).
Tom Belknap is a partner at the law firm Blank Rome LLP in New York and concentrates his practice in the areas of international commercial and insurance litigation and arbitration, with particular emphasis on the maritime industry. Tom was previously a partner with Healy & Baillie LLP. He obtained his J.D. in 1996 from Emory Law School and his B.A. from Tufts University in 1991.
George joined CIT in August 2013 in Originations & Support. Prior to CIT, George Completed his MSc in Shipping, Trade and Finance from Cass Business School in London, where he graduated with a distinction. George currently also serves on the board of Young Shipping Professionals of New York (YSPNY). George has worked in internships in the maritime industry, including Clarksons, Platou Markets and Dahlman Rose. He has also worked as a consultant to Jacq. Pierot Jr. & Sons Inc., a NY based S&P firm. George Graduated with honors from George Washington University in 2011, and from Packer Collegiate Institute in 2007.
Kalli Livanos was born in the United States and grew up in Athens, Greece. Kalli graduated with honors from Babson College in 2012 with a degree in Business Administration. Following her undergraduate studies she was employed by an investment fund in New York focusing on Shipping & Offshore markets. During her time in New York Kalli also completed her MSc at Columbia University with honors.
Kalli returned to Greece in 2015 to work at the headquarters of Kyla Shipping; she has worked on the development of new projects, capital sourcing and structuring, and currently handles commercial matters.
Kalli is a member of the Shipping Committee of the Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce and maintains strong ties with the maritime community in New York.