Florida Gov. Rick Scott has reappointed Matthew Sams, vice president, Caribbean relations, for Holland America Line, to the Florida Board of Pilots Commission. Sams’ term runs from July 6, 2011, to Oct. 31, 2013.

The Board of Pilots Commission licenses pilots, determines the number of state-licensed pilots for each port and administers discipline for the profession. The board consists of 10 appointed members who may serve two consecutive four-year terms.

Florida regulates foreign-flagged ships and U.S.-flagged ships coming from foreign ports entering or leaving Florida ports. To protect against economic and environmental damages from accidents on Florida waterways, the state requires ships to use state-licensed harbor pilots with detailed knowledge of local conditions. Pilots serve as advisors to ship masters (captains) when taking ships in or out of port. Harbor pilots serve 11 of Florida’s 14 deep-water ports.

Sams joined Carnival Cruise lines in 1985. In June 1997 Sams was named vice president, Caribbean relations, for Holland America Line. He is responsible for liaising with various governmental and regulatory agencies in the Caribbean, Latin America and Florida. He also is responsible for overall operation of Half Moon Cay, the company’s award-winning, private island destination in the Bahamas. 

Based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Sams represents Holland America Line on the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association, and serves as vice chairman of the FCCA Operations Committee.

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