Samantha Steerman, Part 5

Jul 29, 2022

Today is the final show featuring a recent interview with Samantha Steerman, vessel traffic coordinator for the Columbia River Bar Pilots. Her job is unique, demanding and central to the transit of cargo ships on the river.

Her role, like many jobs in the maritime industry, is largely hidden from the public. She’s part of a vital workforce of maritime professionals who work shoreside, making it possible for pilots, ships and their crews to do their jobs on the river.

It’s not a stretch to say that without skilled professionals like Samantha working here on our local waterfront, we would not have our “90 percent of everything” that comes to us on ships.

Samantha Steerman, Part 5

Samantha Steerman, Part 5

Today is the final show featuring a recent interview with Samantha Steerman, vessel traffic coordinator for the Columbia River Bar Pilots. Her job is unique, demanding and central to the transit of cargo ships on the river.

Her role, like many jobs in the maritime industry, is largely hidden from the public. She’s part of a vital workforce of maritime professionals who work shoreside, making it possible for pilots, ships and their crews to do their jobs on the river.

It’s not a stretch to say that without skilled professionals like Samantha working here on our local waterfront, we would not have our “90 percent of everything” that comes to us on ships.

Samantha Steerman, Part 4

Jul 28, 2022

Today we continue this week’s series from my interview with Samantha Steerman. She’s the first woman ever to hold the position of vessel traffic coordinator, or dispatcher, for the Columbia River Bar Pilots.

To imagine yourself in her job, picture yourself sitting at a desk with a microphone, a radio transmitter and receiver, and a telephone, in an office with colleagues  who are also asking necessary questions and checking in with important information. Not to mention numerous ships transiting the river inbound and outbound. All of these things may be happening at once.

At any given moment, she’s interpreting a scratchy radio transmission from the captain of an incoming ship whose first language is not English, fielding phone calls about ship and pilot transits, and talking with pilots who need to check in with her about other priorities.

Let’s just say it’s a job for someone with a cool head, a lot of multitasking abilities and skills, and inside knowledge about the local maritime industry.

Samantha Steerman, Part 4

Samantha Steerman, Part 4

Today we continue this week’s series from my interview with Samantha Steerman. She’s the first woman ever to hold the position of vessel traffic coordinator, or dispatcher, for the Columbia River Bar Pilots.

To imagine yourself in her job, picture yourself sitting at a desk with a microphone, a radio transmitter and receiver, and a telephone, in an office with colleagues  who are also asking necessary questions and checking in with important information. Not to mention numerous ships transiting the river inbound and outbound. All of these things may be happening at once.

At any given moment, she’s interpreting a scratchy radio transmission from the captain of an incoming ship whose first language is not English, fielding phone calls about ship and pilot transits, and talking with pilots who need to check in with her about other priorities.

Let’s just say it’s a job for someone with a cool head, a lot of multitasking abilities and skills, and inside knowledge about the local maritime industry.

Samantha Steerman, Part 3

Jul 27, 2022

This week, we’re hearing excerpts from a recent interview I did with Samantha Steerman. Her official job is Vessel Traffic Coordinator for the Columbia River Bar Pilots. She works on the waterfront in Astoria. Her job requires her to juggle a lot of competing priorities at once, and each one is important. She’s also the first woman to hold this position for the pilots. And while she occasionally encounters other women in her day’s work, people she talks with in the course of her day are often surprised to hear a female voice, because women are still few and far between in the maritime trades.

Samantha Steerman, Part 3

Samantha Steerman, Part 3

This week, we’re hearing excerpts from a recent interview I did with Samantha Steerman. Her official job is Vessel Traffic Coordinator for the Columbia River Bar Pilots. She works on the waterfront in Astoria. Her job requires her to juggle a lot of competing priorities at once, and each one is important. She’s also the first woman to hold this position for the pilots. And while she occasionally encounters other women in her day’s work, people she talks with in the course of her day are often surprised to hear a female voice, because women are still few and far between in the maritime trades.

Samantha Steerman interview, Part 2

Jul 26, 2022

This week we’re hearing excerpts from my interview with Samantha Steerman: she’s the vessel traffic coordinator (dispatcher) for the Columbia River Bar Pilots in Astoria. She coordinates the comings and goings of ships and pilots on the river. That means she spends a lot of time on the radio talking to people from all around the world about critical details related to the transit of massive ships in and out of the Columbia. It’s demanding work with a lot at stake.

Samantha Steerman interview, Part 2

Samantha Steerman interview, Part 2

This week we’re hearing excerpts from my interview with Samantha Steerman: she’s the vessel traffic coordinator (dispatcher) for the Columbia River Bar Pilots in Astoria. She coordinates the comings and goings of ships and pilots on the river. That means she spends a lot of time on the radio talking to people from all around the world about critical details related to the transit of massive ships in and out of the Columbia. It’s demanding work with a lot at stake.

Columbia River Bar Pilots Dispatcher Samantha Steerman

Jul 25, 2022

This week we’ll hear excerpts from my interview with Columbia River Bar Pilot Dispatcher Samantha Steerman.

She’s a seasoned professional in the maritime industry, and the first woman ever to hold the dispatcher’s position for the pilots.

Her job requires her to multi-task like mad: handling emergencies, coordinating pilot transfers, and working daily with people from many different countries.

Samantha Steerman, Part 5

Columbia River Bar Pilots Dispatcher Samantha Steerman

This week we’ll hear excerpts from my interview with Columbia River Bar Pilot Dispatcher Samantha Steerman.

She’s a seasoned professional in the maritime industry, and the first woman ever to hold the dispatcher’s position for the pilots.

Her job requires her to multi-task like mad: handling emergencies, coordinating pilot transfers, and working daily with people from many different countries.

Jones Act tankers on the Columbia

Jul 21, 2022

The Jones Act is a US law that says that cargo ships going between US ports in domestic trade must be US built, US flagged, and crewed by US citizens or nationals.

We have a Jones Act tanker on the river today, hauling Petroleum for Chevron. She’s an unusual ship because of her Jones Act status, but she is also among a small number of cargo ships that may not need to take a pilot on board.

Samantha Steerman, Part 3

Jones Act tankers on the Columbia

The Jones Act is a US law that says that cargo ships going between US ports in domestic trade must be US built, US flagged, and crewed by US citizens or nationals.

We have a Jones Act tanker on the river today, hauling Petroleum for Chevron. She’s an unusual ship because of her Jones Act status, but she is also among a small number of cargo ships that may not need to take a pilot on board.